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IMPORTANT Arrival and Dismissal traffic pattern changes!
IMPORTANT Arrival and Dismissal traffic pattern changes!
Paul Barrette
Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Hello OCRS families,

Even though morning arrival was a little better this morning, afternoon dismissal was not better and neither process is working well enough for families or for the buses. I have been consulting with the district's Facilities Director, the construction project manager, and the Smithfield Police Department on ways to improve the traffic flow for arrival and dismissal. Based upon those conversations, we are making a change to the traffic pattern beginning tomorrow, September 16th. Please see the details and map below:

New Arrival and Dismissal Traffic Pattern

  1. Parent vehicles will still enter the campus using the entrance on the right (north) side of the building. Please use the lane on the right of the entrance.
  2. Once you have entered the parking lot, parent drop-off will stay in the left lane while school buses will stay in the right lane. School buses will continue around the outside of the parking lot. This step has not changed.
  3. A staff member (most likely Mr. Barrette) will be standing near the end of the loop to direct traffic. When signaled by the staff member, parent vehicles will continue to proceed behind the school around the outside of the parking lot. Parent vehicles will continue completely around the building and turn left at the end of the building.
  4. After turning left, a student drop-off zone has been clearly marked with cones right in front of Door 5. Students will exit their parent's vehicle and proceed directly to the school staff members who will be waiting to collect their daily health screening ticket and to take their temperature with a touchless thermometer.
  5. When the student has safely entered Door 5, the parent vehicle will proceed to exit the campus using the entrance on the left (south) side of the building near the construction.

By making this change, we are hoping to improve traffic in two ways. First, by keeping the entrance lanes the same and now sending cars behind the building, we can accommodate many more cars in line and keep them off of Old County Road. We believe that by keeping the bus in the outside lane until towards the end of the loop, they will be able to make the turn to drop students off at Door 10. Second, allowing family vehicles to exit the campus using a separate entrance, we will help parents exit the campus more easily and quickly.

Daily Health Screening tickets for each student

Please make sure to have a completed Daily Health Screening ticket ready for each of your children if you are dropping them off or walking them to school. Each child will receive a new packet of tickets each Friday. Blank tickets are also attached to this message for any family that needs them. It's OK if you print them on white paper. While we can provide extras during arrival if you forget, it holds up the process for other families.

We know that arrival and dismissal has been very challenging for families these past two days. Other schools in Smithfield have been experiencing similar challenges. We have all been working hard with the Director of Facilities, construction project manager, and Smithfield Police to find a better solution and we are hoping that will improve arrival and dismissal for everyone. We appreciate your patience, flexibility, and cooperation as we continue to make adjustments.

Thank you,
Mr. Barrette