As you probably know, I am head of Lake Tahoe School, where I have the privilege, pleasure and responsibility of watching more than 150 children on a daily basis. I am not the only one to do so, nor is the watchfulness of all of us restricted to our campuses and our homes.
Incline Village is a place that draws many families because of its relative safety and the true village-raising-children phenomenon. We can rest assured that most folks are watching out for each other.
Except, it too often appears, when behind the wheel of a car. On a daily basis I see drivers tear through parking lots or side streets, heedless of speed limits and even stop signs — even on roads and lots that border schools, where children are so often present.
In what is supposed to be a slow-paced town, there appear to be more than a few folks who can’t manage to diminish their speed or wait patiently in line for an additional 30 seconds for the car in front of them to move along.
At the same time, because we are a pretty safe and caring community, parents trust that their children — even their littlest ones — are somehow protected at all times. On several occasions recently I have witnessed young children dart across a road or wander behind cars in a parking lot, heedless of the fact that they are practically invisible to the drivers. Meanwhile, parents chat to each other or on their cellphones, oblivious as their children to the inherent danger of the situation.
Usually I am not a particularly preachy person. When it comes to the safety of children, however, I feel no compunction to hold my tongue. The tourist season is upon us, bringing a huge increase in traffic and general confusion about where people are going.
It is the responsibility of all of us in this wonderful village to slow down and increase our watchfulness. No phone call, no friendly conversation, no getting to the beach early is worth injuring another person, especially a child.
Please, slow down. Look around. Do your part to preserve the beauty and peace of this wonderful community.
Ruth Glass is headmaster at Lake Tahoe School. She can be reached for comment through her blog at www.laketahoeschool.org.