It's that time of year again, when parents everywhere readjust to the trials and tribulations of the new school year.
While the peace and quiet at home is much appreciated, the stress and anxiety of getting everyone to school on time is enough to drive parents bonkers.
And nothing is more stressful that the drop-off line itself: a conga line of cars stretching to the horizon as parents wait to send their kids to school.
A dad from Indian Trail, North Carolina was just trying to make his fellow parents laugh at the start of this school year, but his post about drop-off line etiquette is going viral - because it's so true.
"I'm only going to say this once..."
On the eve of the first day of school, David Danielewicz gave his fellow parents fair warning about proper drop-off procedure on a local Facebook page.
"I'm only going to say this once," he began.
If you have to bathe or dress your kid, comb their hair, scramble them an egg and write them a send off letter before they can exit the car - YOU DO NOT BELONG IN THE SCHOOL DROP OFF LINE.
Only people who raised their kids to jump out of the car with backpacks loaded like they are storming the beaches of Normandy while the car is at a slow roll are allowed in the drop off line. I will be giving stink eye warnings today but tomorrow I'm issuing citations.
The comment drew thousands of likes, replies, and shares, mainly from people who applauded Danielewicz for speaking the truth.
And he says some of the most outrageous examples from his tongue-in-cheek post aren't even made up.
"I was kind of making a joke for Union County, and it just went viral," he told NBC Charlotte.
"I've seen people combing their kids' hair, letting them finish their cereal, truly amazing."
Staying Sane In The Drop-Off Lane
Parents love to laugh about the stress of drop-off and pickup times, but it's not all fun and games.
The crush of parents and cars outside of schools at during these hours is a serious problem, and one that can even be life-threatening for children.
A study by York University and the Hospital for Sick Children revealed that young pedestrians have a higher risk of being struck by a car during these rush hours.
If your school's lineups are frustrating you, or just descending into chaos every day, there are steps you can take to fix them:
- Bring up the issues with your school's council or PTA, so they feel pressured to address it. You'll also meet like-minded parents this way, and you can swap ideas.
- Organize volunteers to police the line, and keep parents from breaking the rules.
- Find a better spot for the loading areas: ideally someplace far from buses and parking lots.
If your school will not work with you, many parents find walking or driving to school is more relaxing.
You can save time and energy by parking a few blocks away from school first - close enough to commute but far away from the honking parents.
Carpooling is another easy option, and apps like GoKid make it simple to organize with other parents. Ever child in a carpool is one less car on the road, and every little bit helps.
[H/T: KARE 11]