Dozens of Metro schools won't have crossing guards - WSMV News 4

Dozens of Metro schools won't have crossing guards

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

A crossing guard at every school...it's something many parents would expect, but it won't be happening in Nashville. In fact, dozens of schools across the Midstate's largest district will be without the safety measure this year. 

The News4 I-Team found more than three-dozen Metro Nashville Public Schools will not have at all when classes begin Tuesday. 

Some schools, like J.T. Moore Middle School in Green Hills, will only have a crossing guard part of the day. There will be one there in the morning, but not in the afternoon -- a time when traffic in the area is at its busiest. 

Others won't have one at all -- that list includes every single high school and more than 20 pre-K, elementary and middle schools.

Hattie Cotton Elementary School in East Nashville sits on busy Greenwood Avenue.

Sean Stannard can't imagine sending his eight-year-old daughter to school there without a crossing guard. 

"I know the crossing guards have an eye on her as soon as she gets to school,” Stannard said. 

While his daughter's school has a crossing guard, the reality is, more than three-dozen others across the Metro Nashville Public School District do not. 

"I think somebody should get to the bottom of that and figure out why certain schools, especially elementary schools, don't have crossing guards,” Stannard said.

Metro schools will have 150 crossing guards for this school year.  Last year, the district had 160 crossing guards. The year before that...174. 

It's a number we found is getting lower and lower each year.

The I-Team checked, and while there are no recent incidents in Nashville where a child was hit at an unattended school crosswalk, it has happened elsewhere. Just last year in Oklahoma, a young girl was lucky to escape with minor injuries when she was hit at a busy intersection outside her elementary school with no crossing guard.

"If we could have a crossing guard at every school that would be a great thing,” MNPS spokeswoman Dawn Rutledge said.

According to Rutledge, it is up to the Metro police department to pick which schools have crossing guards and which do not. 

Police officials told the I-Team that they simply do not have enough officers to staff every school with a crossing guard. Instead, they conduct site surveys throughout the year to decide which ones need them the most.

“I know that I have a crossing guard at my kid's school, but for all the kids who don’t...I mean, we're talking about the safety of children here,” Stannard said.

Metro police say they are currently hiring 10 additional crossing guards that will start sometime this school year and are looking to hire more. The job is part-time and pays $10.81 an hour.

Here is a list of all the schools that will not have crossing guards when school starts this week:

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