It’s hard enough to juggle childcare responsibilities and remote jobs.
It becomes more difficult when there isn’t enough time or energy to commute.
Also, with the rise of gas prices, it’s not sustainable for many moms to drive their kids from one place to another especially if they have more than one kid.
Running a successful preschool carpooling system can be great for both parents and kids as well as schools as a whole.
It can also help parents to be more productive with their time and money rather than driving from one place to another [or wasting time getting lost in the process].
It can also help to eliminate the need for parents to drive their kids while they are sick.
Here are some tips How to Run a Successful Preschool Carpooling System:
Attend your Child’s School Functions to get to know the other Parents better
This way, you can easily plan a schedule for the next semester.
You have more control on how often you see your kids and you can also negotiate on who will be driving whom at what time of the day.
Hold a meeting for all Parents and discuss running a Carpooling Program
This makes it easier to figure out the challenges you’re going to face and how you can easily handle those challenges together as a group or team.
It’ll also help you set up some guidelines that will keep the preschool carpooling system running smoothly.
Using a communication system like an email group can help create camaraderie between parents.
You can also use this communication channel to solve any disagreements or problems that may arise during the course of running the preschool carpooling system.
This is especially important when there are emergencies involved (e.g., if your child is sick, gets hurt, etc.)
Conduct monthly Carpooling Safety discussions with Parents
Hold monthly safety discussions with parents to discuss best practices when it comes to being in traffic or when dropping kids off or picking up from school, daycare, or other venues.
You may also want to hold a yearly refresher course so that everyone can be reminded of basic road rules and carpool etiquette.
This way, kids are safe at all times while traveling in vehicles with friends and family members.
Have a clear protocol on who’s allowed inside the vehicle if it’s not the driver’s own ride (e.g., checking for backpacks).
The car should be equipped with child car seats that have car seat safety head support and booster seats every time the kids are together in one vehicle.
Make sure your car is well-maintained by having regular oil changes and tune-ups to make sure everyone is always safe.
Do background checks on the drivers, too.
Be proactive when it comes to emergency situations (e.g., attending to all medical needs immediately).
It’s best to be prepared for all kinds of emergency situations even before they happen so you won’t waste time when something does happen to your child while inside somebody else’s vehicle.
Discuss Contingency Plans with Parents
Figure out who’s going to what place and when, and at the same time consider balancing your schedule with other parents’ schedules.
As much as possible, avoid doubling up your kids’ schedule or trading off too often with another parent.
This can be challenging especially if you’re new to the system but it’ll get better in time.
Even if you’ve already established a carpool, you can still make changes to your schedule or routes depending on traffic conditions or recent updates from the school about certain areas being under construction or needing repairs.
Just remember to inform other parents immediately so they can be prepared for whatever happens at all times.
Discuss safety measures every time you pick up/drop off your child(ren) with other parents who are also included in the system
Having the kids walk together when it’s safe to do so is one way of saving money while maximizing family time during afternoons, weekends, and holidays.
Make sure no cars are coming before letting them cross the street together though!
This is especially important when cars park in the middle of the road or when a car is making a right turn.
Do a headcount before parents go their separate ways to make sure every child is accounted for at all times.
This can prevent mix-ups and unnecessary worries while you’re together with other parents or while going your separate ways after running errands or visiting friends/family members.
Create alerts for specific routes, morning drop offs, afternoon pick ups, etc., so there’s no room for mix-ups especially if there are multiple drivers handling the same schedule
Staying up-to-date on current events in your neighborhood can help you avoid any potential problems that may arise during the day such as construction zones near schools and parks, newly implemented traffic and parking restrictions, and other similar issues.
Respond immediately to any changes in the neighborhood so you’ll know what’s going on ahead of time and be able to plan accordingly.
Review and Repeat all Safety discussions regularly and make them fun by including songs and interactive games/activities whenever possible.
Reviewing the rules and guidelines for carpooling should be easy and fun so kids will look forward to seeing their other parents during drop-offs and pick-ups.
Kids may even volunteer to take the lead sometimes by reminding everyone what to do or not to do as soon as they get inside a vehicle.
Preschool carpooling can be a great way to ensure that your child is always safe and sound as they’re transported from one place to another.
Take the necessary steps to make sure your preschool carpooling system is safe, efficient, and well-organized.