Crossing Guard Program Expands to Middle Schools
When school starts in August, parents and students will notice some major changes at middle schools in Hillsborough County.
In support of the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office's efforts to provide new crossing guards at middle schools, Hillsborough County is making a wide range of safety improvements designed to make it easier for kids navigating to and from school.
The move comes after the Board of County Commissioners approved $710,000 to implement an expanded crossing guard program covering the 24 public middle schools in unincorporated Hillsborough County. Working together, the County, the Sheriff's Office, and the Hillsborough County School District identified the need for more than 140 crossing guards and pedestrian-safety enhancements at 21 of the middle schools to support the program.
The Sheriff's Office received $510,000 as start-up funding to begin hiring and training crossing guards for the 2019/2020 school year. The County is using $200,000 to construct and install additional crosswalks, curb ramps, traffic signs and signals, pavement markings, and flashing beacons needed to support crossing guard operations before school resumes on Aug. 12.
Safety projects being completed at or near the middle schools this summer include:
- Barrington: new crossing signs with rectangular rapid flashing beacons, additional sidewalks, refurbishment of pavement markings, and replacement of faded school signs
- Buchanan: new marked crosswalk and school warning signage near North Boulevard and Lake Magdalene Boulevard
- Burnett: refurbishment of pavement markings
- Davidsen: refurbishment of pavement markings
- Dowdell Magnet: addition of school warning signs
- Eisenhower: new pavement markings, new illuminated sign with an arrow that restricts turning movement, pedestrian-activated signals, and sidewalk and multi-use pathway for bicyclists and pedestrians along Covington Garden Drive
- Farnell: new illuminated sign with an arrow that restricts turning movement
- Giunta: refurbishment of pavement markings
- Ben Hill: raised delineators (guides) to outline vehicle paths and new illuminated signs with arrows that restrict turning movements.
- Jennings: installation of crosswalk markings and school warning signs, minor sidewalk replacement at the crossings, extension of the school zone with reduced speed to provide a safer crossing, and crosswalk repainting
- Mann: refurbished crosswalk
- Martinez: refurbishment of pavement markings
- McLane: refurbishment of pavement markings and minor sidewalk replacement at the crossings
- Mulrennan: traffic signal operation change (replacing the three-section signal head to a five-section signal head) to assist westbound motorists making a left turn on Durant Road at Pearson Road
- Pierce: construct ADA-compliant curb ramps, additional sidewalk connections, refurbished pavement markings, and a new marked crosswalk
- Progress Village: installation of marked crosswalks with rectangular rapid flashing beacons, stop bars, minor sidewalk section replacement for the crossings, and school warning signs
- Randall: new illuminated sign with an arrow that restricts turning movement at Fishhawk Crossings and Fishhawk Boulevard
- Rodgers: tree-trimming maintenance
- Sgt. Smith: refurbishment of pavement markings
- Turkey Creek: installation of new crosswalk markings and pavement resurfacing near school
- Webb: new signs and pavement markings as part of a current resurfacing project
A field review at Beth Shields Way, Burns, and Walker middle schools determined the signs, traffic signals, crossings, and pavement marketing are already in good condition and no further action is required. Evaluations also identified that students at Beth Shields Way and Walker commute 100 percent by bus.