Lollipop ladies could be axed at 13 county schools including Hailsham

schools where lollipop lady could be axed, Hailsham
schools where lollipop lady could be axed, Hailsham

Two Hailsham primary schools could lose their lollipop lady under proposals to axe the position at 13 schools in the county.

White House Primary School and Marshlands Primary School in Marshfoot Lane share a crossing and lollipop lady, and are among the list of school sites drawn up by East Sussex County Council which could have funding for a school crossing patrol officer withdrawn next year.

The county council stressed that the idea to withdraw funding for the position is undergoing consultation and no decision has been made or will be made until the consultation has been completed.

In a report to cabinet on October 15 the council said the 13 school crossing patrols do not meet essential criteria for funding which is based on the number of cars and the amount of pupils crossing the road.

It is looking to stop the service from April 1 next year which could save around £150,000.

A spokeswoman for the county council said: “East Sussex County Council, like all local authorities, continues to face financial pressures and needs to make savings of £60million over the next three years. This will have a significant impact on the level and type of services we are able to deliver in the future.

“We don’t want to take away school crossing patrols from schools where staff and parents want them, and we are more than happy to train people and support and manage patrols carried out by volunteers or sponsored by local companies and organisations, but it is not feasible for the council to continue to fund the patrols that do not meet the criteria.

“Anybody, from the parish council, schools and parents’ groups to local groups and businesses, can sponsor a crossing patrol and we will be happy to discuss this option with interested groups, both for crossings that meet the criteria and those that don’t.

“There will be a consultation with schools and members of the public and their views will be taken into account before a final decision is made.”

The council said the current cost of the school crossing patrol service is £140,000. The figure covers salary costs, uniforms and the salary costs of two school crossing patrol supervisors.

The council said the Road Safety Team, which costs £14,000, would remain to ensure existing crossing sites and volunteer and sponsored crossings operate correctly.

The report said there were several options to be considered.

The first was to continue the service at the 13 schools which would save no funds, cease the service which would save £140,000, migrate the service to individual schools saving £100,000, secure external funding or sponsorship saving £100,000 or reducing the service saving £50,000.