Carpooling to School Has Benefits

For many families, the school year is a very busy time. Between making lunches and taking
the children to and from school, it may feel like you’re always in a hurry.
But weekdays can be more manageable if you share the school driving responsibilities with
other families, otherwise known as “carpooling.”

What is carpooling?

Carpooling is a type of ride-sharing that allows busy people to take turns with other
neighborhood parents. Carpooling helps you:

  • Save time and money.
  • Minimize the wear and tear on your car.
  • Reduce traffic during peak hours.
  • Get to know other parents and community members.

Choosing carpool drivers

  • Share the idea of carpooling with responsible parents also interested in participating.
  • Try to make sure that participating drivers have cars that are in good condition and all
    valid documents (registration, insurance, etc.).
  • Figure out how many children can safely ride in the car, depending on its capacity.
  • Keep the phone number and address of each parent in case of emergencies.

Recommendations for drivers

  • Leave your house early, with enough time to pick up all the children on time.
  • Have children under age 13 sit in the back seat, and make sure they wear their seatbelts.
  • In South Carolina, children younger than 8 years old or less than 57 inches
    tall must ride in a booster or car safety seat.
  • Before driving to school, make sure that all the car doors are closed properly and use
    the child safety locks if your car has them.
  • Never leave children alone in the car, not even for a minute.

Advice for driving in school zones

  • Drive slowly when you’re in a school zone and always obey the speed limit.
  • When driving behind a school bus, make sure to stop when the red lights flash. Never try to pass a bus.
  • Try not to block or park in front of the school entrance or exit.
  • Drop off the children in specified loading/unloading zones. Wait until you see them go
    into school before leaving. Notify the teacher who will be picking up the children after
    school each day.


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