Parents hit out at walking ban

Education chiefs have defended a ban on letting primary children walk through a secondary school on their way to classes.

Many pupils at the new £7.7million Lairdsland Primary School, in Kirkintilloch, have been cutting through St Ninian’s High School in order to avoid a muddy access lane.

But they’ve now been banned from using the St Ninian’s route - a move that has angered concerned parents.

One dad told the Herald: “There are many local families that walk this way as the small access lane down the side of the school is covered in dogs dirt and at the bottom of the lane there is a mud swamp.

“There are two access points for us - one in Northbank and one at the top of Roman Road - both have NO lighting at all and it is very scary for kids come the dark nights.

“My daughter recently came home crying as she had fallen in the mud going down the lane.

“I think it’s a disgrace that kids can’t access through St Ninian’s.”

Chief education officer Jacqui MacDonald told the Herald that council staff would look at how the path could be improved, but insisted that the ban was fair.

She said: “We do not allow the public to walk through school grounds unless they are visiting the school. This is for reasons of health and safety and more importantly security so that staff can monitor who is within the school grounds.

“People with mobility issues and those walking with prams will still be allowed to walk through St Ninian’s as we understand they may find the paths difficult.

“As well as the path mentioned, there is an alternative one off Northbank Road which is well lit and has recently been upgraded.

“We would ask all parents for their co-operation as the security and health and safety of the children is our main priority and we cannot allow people to walk through school grounds.”