School parking prices exclude students

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One of the top complaints among student drivers is the school’s parking permit fee. When the price to buy a year-long permit is as high as $30, the school potentially excludes many students and risks their safety. Ironically, faculty and staff members, get free parking. The school needs to rethink their parking policy.

A student must apply for a year-round permit in order to legally park on campus. One of the stipulations that the district adheres by is that the student’s name must be on their family’s insurance policy as an additional driver. Some parents are reluctant to do this because it increases their own cost for insurance. The fact that the permit can also expire when a student fails to keep their insurance up to date leads to students potentially buying a parking permit more than once a year.

These expenses are too much for lower-income students, which make up 80.4 percent of the student body. In that sense, it is not fair to have them pay so much for parking when the majority may not be able to afford it. Students that have trouble relying on their parents to pay for school related fees are at a heavy disadvantage.

Students who park on the streets risk getting towed due to the South parking lot’s exclusion. Students not having parking permits is a serious concern for the neighboring streets as it increases traffic and causes complaints from nearby households.     

Street parking potentially harms students walking to school or returning to their vehicles late at night, putting them at an unnecessary risk. The major traffic surrounding the area can lead to potential car crashes, pedestrian injury, or worse. Too many student drivers are parking themselves in areas where the school is no longer responsible for any accidents occurring.  

Students also question what the payment money is used for and claim that the school should clearly state that on the permit. The school should try their best to quell the various complaints from student drivers. Instead, the school decides to leave students in the dark, leaving them unaware of information that they should definitely know about.

When it comes to campus parking, the school is one of the more accommodating; in fact, San Gabriel is the only school in the district that offers it. At Mark Keppel and Alhambra High School, students park their cars in the neighboring streets because of the lack of parking spaces for student vehicles. In contrast, the South parking lot has an abundance of parking spots that go unused each day. The school cannot use the same logic as others in the district because there is plenty of room to situate every student driver.

Lastly, school faculty and staff are able to have their vehicles in the South parking lot without paying the same fee as students. If adults with jobs are able to get free parking, students whose “job” it is to go to school should also have the same privilege.

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