GW Safety
George Washington Middle School Safety Committee

The purpose of the Safety Committee is to help students get to and from school safely by providing timely, relevant and on-going information about the school grounds, surrounding streets and drivers, pedestrian and bicycle laws.

GWMS is located in the middle of three major traffic arterials for high volume of traffic--Ridgewood, Monroe and Godwin Avenues. Arrival and dismissal times at GW are very congested with motor, bicycle and pedestrian traffic flow. NJ Transit pulls in front of the school on Monroe at 7:50 AM and again at 3:00 PM. Only district school buses may use the new cut-out on Washington Place at arrival and dismissal times. This year there is added construction traffic and there is no longer a school parking lot.

For everyone’s safety and to expedite traffic flow through this area, drivers dropping off and picking up students from GW are asked to avoid Monroe Avenue and Washington Place altogether. There are also NO drop offs on Monroe Avenue or Godwin Avenue.

Please drop off and pick up students 2-3 blocks from GW and have students walk the rest of the way to school. Choose local streets with a sidewalk and marked crosswalk to pull over to exit or enter a car. See the attached school walking plan for a broad map however some possibilities are:
  •  Sherman Place at Washington Place               
  •  Heights & W. Ridgewood Avenue
  • Madison Place & N. Monroe Avenue
  • Spencer Place & Ackerman
Drop Off and Pick Up Safety:
  1. Pull as close to the curb as possible. Don’t impede the flow of traffic.  
  2. Only allow a student to exit a car on the curbside or right side of the car.
  3. Don’t back your car up. (40% of pedestrian accidents happen in reverse).
  4. Don’t drive while talking or texting on a cell phone. It’s illegal because it’s dangerous.
  5. Be patient, be courteous and exercise due care for any pedestrian in a road.

Pedestrian Safety:
  • Pedestrians must use crosswalks; marked or unmarked at intersections. Jaywalking is illegal because it’s dangerous.
  • For further safety use crossing guards who are stationed closest to the school.  
  • Only walk on the sidewalk and don’t leave the curb to cross between cars.
  • Don’t cross the street while wearing earphones, talking on a cell phone or texting.
  • Remain alert! Don’t assume that cars are going to stop. Make eye contact with the driver to make sure they see you. Watch for cars backing up especially out of driveways.
  • Wear bright or reflective clothing or shoes when walking at night or early morning. Drivers can’t avoid what they can’t see.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. Exercise due care for your safety.
  • Report anything you feel is unsafe to the school’s Main Office.
  • For additional state information:
Bicycle Safety:
  •  In New Jersey, the law states a bicyclist must obey all state and local automobile driving laws. A parent may be held responsible for the child’s violation of any traffic law.
  • State law requires any bicycle rider, anyone roller or inline skating or skateboarding to wear a HELMET.
  • When you have reached the crosswalk closest to the school, walk your bicycle across the crosswalk and to the bicycle rack on school property where you can lock it up for the day. Skateboards should be carried and stored in lockers.
  • The school does not permit skateboarding, skating or biking on school property.
Committee Recommendation:

Students can enter the building at the 7:45 bell. Whether driving, walking or biking, plan to arrive at this time to avoid rushing to be on time for school.

Safety First!