2023-24 Parking Lot Procedures

Message from Superintendent, Jason Inkrott

Thank you for your patience!  Due to a variety of restrictions on our property, we understand that parking, student drop off / pick up, and the congestion on Main Street left much room for improvement.  However, we are optimistic that we will see improvements for the 2023-2024 school year.  Hopefully you’ve seen the many changes to the north side of our property this summer.  This area will continue to be a work in progress as we install landscaping, plant grass, and complete other finishing touches in the coming months.  I want to thank our facility team, consisting of several community members and staff members, for their work in planning for the parking lot and for seeing this project through to fruition.

We ask that you continue to be patient as everyone learns the new practices that are explained in more detail in the documents linked below.  It will take time for our new procedures to become routine and patience/grace will be required on everyone’s part.  Administrators will continue to monitor the changes to determine any tweaks that may be needed.  With the addition of the new north side parking lot, it is our hope that we will see enhancements in the following areas:

  1. Increased parking availability to students, staff, and the community

  2. Improved traffic flow on Main Street

  3. An improved student pick up / drop off experience for our families by separating high school student parking from elementary drop off / pick up

  4. Increased safety by reducing the number of students crossing through traffic

  5. Eliminating the time that elementary students sit on buses after school waiting for the dismissal of the high school and middle school students

  6. Eliminating the time before school where high school and middle school students wait in the cafeteria for the delayed start of their school day. 

The Van Buren Local School District is excited for the new changes and we look forward to the upcoming school year!  If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact myself, or your student’s principal.  For updates on the parking lot changes, please visit our website https://bit.ly/23parkingproject

I hope that everyone had an enjoyable summer.  We look forward to the return of our students and staff in the weeks ahead!

Elementary Parking Lot Image

MS/HS Parking Lot Image

Elementary School Drop-Off and Pick-Up Procedures

We are excited to have the additional parking spaces available for this school year and anticipate that this will improve our flow of traffic tremendously! Please bear with us as we navigate these changes to start the year, we may have to tweak some procedures once we start the year and see how things are going with both drop-off and pickup. For the first several days we will have staff/administration out assisting with the AM/PM procedures.

Please always communicate with your child’s teacher and the main office about any PM changes in the pickup and any last-minute changes should be called into Mrs. Bowman at the elementary school main office. If this all feels overwhelming please remember we always encourage the use of our busses as the recommended form of transportation to and from school! Thanks for your patience and understanding with the anticipated parking lot changes! Please see the diagram below.

Elementary Drop-Off Image

Elementary School AM Drop-Off Procedures

  • All parents dropping off students in the AM will now do so at the front elementary office entrance (Door 1) starting at 7:40 AM. Students being dropped off at 7:40 will be directed to the elementary cafeteria to wait until our morning bell releases them to class at 7:45; the same time bus riders will be dropped from the bus.

  • When entering the campus all cars dropping elementary students will now only drop at the Elementary Drop Zone (the sidewalk directly in front of the elementary school). Cars will come all the way up to the stop sign just past the main entrance to begin unloading and all cars behind will follow suit.

  • Please follow the directions of staff to assist in a smooth and quick transition from car to school which include: ○ Exiting the car on the passenger/right curbside ONLY and have students be prepared by taking off seatbelts and getting bags ready. ○ Students and parents will be greeted by staff but don’t need to wait for staff to begin exiting as soon as the vehicle comes to a complete stop. ○ Parents please stay in your vehicle and talk to your children about how to safely and efficiently prepare to exit the vehicle.

  • Once your elementary student has safely exited the vehicle you will wait until the vehicle in front of you begins to move to also leave. This is to ensure we have no moving vehicles around elementary students as we get students into the building.

  • Those who have middle school and/or high school students being dropped after elementary will proceed to the MS/HS Drop Zone (door 9) along the curb in front of the high school auditorium/administration offices while those who only had elementary school students can continue in the left lane to proceed toward the parking lot exit.

  • If you need to come to the main office in the morning please park anywhere in the front parking lot and utilize crosswalks to proceed to the front sidewalk toward the elementary main office.

  • If you and/or your child(ren) walk to school please utilize all sidewalks and crosswalks to safely navigate to the main elementary school sidewalk to head toward door 1 as this will now be the only entrance we use in the morning.

  • Please DO NOT use the back baseball field entrance to drop off as we will have this designated as the bus area in the AM and PM and the new back lot will be busy with MS/HS only drop-offs and parking.

Elementary School PM Drop-Off Procedures

  • Students K-12 will now all be released at 2:55. The end-of-the-day pickup will function the same as we handled it last year around the front loop for any elementary students as well as MS/HS students if you have those ages as well. MS/HS-only pickups will be done in the new north lot.

  • Please arrive no earlier than 2:30 PM and please proceed all the way around the front loop to the stop sign before exiting the loop on the other side. Please wait in your vehicle until students begin exiting the building at 2:55 PM. Once you see students come out you can stand outside your vehicle so staff and students can find you. ○ Do not leave gaps more than 3 feet and pull up as close as possible but leave enough space to exit once all students are picked up.

  • With increased space in the front parking lot due to all students being moved to the new back lot we will have plenty of legal parking spaces for parents to also utilize. You can park in any spot if the front loop is full and wait for your students near the small parent waiting area near the small lot behind the HS cafeteria. Please wait in a safe area out of any driving areas and do not come over to the elementary side or school for safety reasons. Teachers will again be splitting classes by bus riders and parent pickups to expedite the process. Teachers will find you and get your child to you safely.

  • Once you have your child(ren) you can safely and slowly begin to exit the lot while ensuring you are watching your surroundings and following any staff instructions if needed

Middle/High School Parking, Drop-Off and Pick-Up Procedures

MS/HS Parking Lot Image

Middle/High School Arrival

Arrival - Start of the School Day: (doors open at 7:40 AM - Tardy bell is 7:55 AM) *No students are permitted to enter through the cafeteria doors

Bus Riders:

  • MS and HS Students utilizing school transportation will be dropped off in the East parking lot (near the baseball field) at 7:45 AM.

  • Students will use the auditorium entrance (door #9) to enter the building

Student Drivers:

  • Enter Vorwerk St. via Main St.

    • Enter door #23 or #26 and proceed to your first-period class

  • Those arriving after 7:55 will need to enter through door #2 (cafeteria entrance) and sign in with a staff member.

  • Note - All student vehicles on school grounds must be registered with the main office through FinalForms. Once this occurs a parking pass will be provided by the office and should be displayed in the vehicle. This will be enforced starting the 2nd week of the school year.

Parent Drop Off:

  • See graphic

  • Enter Vorwerk via Main St.

    • Parking entrance via Maple St. and Elm St. - Not Permitted

  • Enter and continue through the drop-off lane and pull forward along the building toward the football stadium. Students being dropped off will enter door #23 or #26.

  • Turn left prior to the stadium and exit via Elm St. toward Walnut St.

    • Exit to Main St. - Not Permitted

  • Parents who are also dropping off elementary students.

    • Enter the South entrance from Main St.

    • Follow the elementary procedures - then proceed to the auditorium entrance (door #9) to drop off MS/HS students.

Middle/High School Dismissal

DISMISSAL - End of School Day: (Dismissal bell is 2:55 PM) *NO Students will be permitted to exit the cafeteria doors at the end of the school day

Bus Riders:

  • Will exit the rear of the building through the fine arts hallway (door #13)

Student Drivers:

  • Will exit the building through doors #23 and #26

  • Vehicles will exit via Vorwerk or Elm St.

    • Exit via Maple St. - Not Permitted

Parent Pick-Up:

  • Enter Vorwerk via Main St.

    • Entrance via Maple St. and Elm St. - Not Permitted

  • Parents should pull into a parking spot and wait for their students

  • Once students arrive, vehicles can exit via Vorwerk or north on Elm St.

  • Parents who are also picking up elementary students.

    • Enter the South entrance from Main St.

    • Follow the elementary pick-up procedures - then proceed to the auditorium exit area (door #9) to pick up MS/HS students. Students should NOT cross the elementary bridge/garden area