Students late for school due to traffic along Good Luck Road

Students late for school due to traffic along Good Luck Road

During the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year, Parkdale students have been increasingly late due to the daily traffic that takes place on  Good Luck Road in front of the school. Students of Parkdale may leave early; however, they are continuously late. As this problem persists, Parkdale still considers this an unexcused tardy. 

Prince George’s County residents know Good Luck Road very well. It is shy of over seven miles long and merges into major intersections and lies in front of multiple schools. It is used quite frequently every day but most commonly on weekdays. 

With many adults trying to get to their jobs or morning coffee, it shouldn’t be a question of why students are so late to school every day. Trying to drop off students, be it by bus or car, on an already congested road with no traffic lights or crossing guards is a recipe for disaster. 

When asking for student feedback on the matter, the responses were mixed. An anonymous Parkdale junior felt that being late from the traffic was more of the student’s problem. 

“I believe it is not an issue the school can solve,” the student said. “This is more like a student’s responsibility. It also shows how much students find school to be important.” 

Some students feel differently about the school’s response. 

“I don’t feel like this is right especially since we can’t control the traffic,” said senior Fedora Tettekpoe. “Most cars don’t stop and just keep going and this prevents the school buses and car riders from getting inside the school.”

With this mishandled morning traffic, students are being punished and missing valuable instructional time in class. 

“I can’t recall the specific day but I know that I had my first cooking project for food and nutrition and because of the traffic I missed a few instructions so I had to cook the following class,” recalled Tettekpoe. Without passes, students will start getting an in-school suspension for constant tardies and may miss assignments like warm-ups, which most teachers won’t allow to be made up. 

This traffic situation is damaging to Parkdale students’ grades and records. Every day, students are coming to class late due to the traffic along Good Luck Road. However, nothing much has changed since the start of the school year. During our interviews, suggestions were brought up on how to solve the problem, some suggesting hiring a traffic guard in the morning to separate school traffic and regular traffic. Others suggested a grace period for students late from traffic.