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School Run Fun

FROM: Lydia Howland

What NEED does this meet?
Fewer and fewer parents allow their children to walk to school any more which means more and more cars on the road and heavier levels of congestion during school run peak times. This frustrates other road users, environmentalists and parents as everyone knows the school run is one of the most stressful ways to start a day.

But what if there was a quick and easy way to find out if other children in the neighbourhood went to the same school as your child? Maybe you could contact their parents via email and suggest a school run rota? This would be more environmentally sustainable (1 car with 4 children makes much more sense than 4 cars with 1 child) and would alleviate the stress of having to do it every morning.

What is the APPROACH?
Set up a website where users register their postcode, the number of children they have, the schools they attend and the vehicles they own (including seat numbers). People could then search by school name or postcode to find out if other parents with children at the same school live nearby, contact them and arrange a school run rota. It's basically e-nabled carpooling targeted at a specific group who do the same journey daily. Not exactly rocket science but might make people's lives a bit easier.

What are the BENEFITS to people?
Not having to battle through gridlocked traffic which screaming/arguing children 5 mornings out of 7. Save petrol, get more sleep, save the planet. It's all good.

What is the COMPETITION?
I don't think there is anything out there that offers this service, although there might be templates that are similar. I guess it needn't stop at schools either. Perhaps it could be offered to commuters or people who drive to a station, park and then take a train? Or people visiting prisons, hospitals etc?

What BUDGET & LOGISTICS are required?
I honestly don't know but I don't think it can be very expensive because the technology would be similar to something like Friends Reunited. All it need to is collect the data and then enable people to securely email each other, which doesn't sound massively sophisticated.

November 20, 2003 | Permalink


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