Dagenham schools privately fund traffic patrols

Lollipop ladies have returned to an east London borough almost three years after the job was axed by council funding cuts.

Two Dagenham schools – Furze Infants and Warren Junior in Dagenham – are now privately funding the crossing patrols in a bid to “protect pupils”.

The schools said they worked with Barking and Dagenham council‘s legal team to self-fund the return of the service outside Warren Junior School and at the junction of High Road Chadwell Heath and Whalebone Lane North.

Councillor Evelyn Carpenter, cabinet member for educational attainment and school improvement, said: “I hope this will encourage other schools to follow suit and look to raise funds to bring back their own crossing patrol officers.

“Pupils’ safety remains a priority for the council, which is why we have invested in traffic calming measures around all our schools, including speed restrictions, speed humps, and safe places to cross.”

More than 20 primary schools across Barking and Dagenham lost their crossing patrols in March 2017 after the council said it could no longer afford the £165,000-a-year service.

A campaign to privately fund the service was driven by the school’s chair of Governors Glenda Paddle, who also represents Whalebone ward as a councillor.

She said: “Parents were concerned about the lack of school crossing patrols, so we have listened to their concerns and have been determined to do all we can to make sure our pupils are safe.”

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Rachael Burford

Local Democracy Reporter