I am thinking of allowing my 6 year old son to sometimes walk himself home after school, though I never allowed my older girls to do so until they were at least nine years of age. My son is very independent but what is your advice, input or experience about this, is he too young still, and is it I tend to allow him to do more than I have allowed my now nine and fifteen year old girls?

Starrlynn - posted on 08/28/2014 ( 2 moms have responded )




what age is appropriate for me to allow my son, who's now 6, walk home a few blocks from school by himself? Also, what age would be most appropriate for my daughter, (almost 10 years old) to walk home after school? I have allowed my daughter to walk the few blocks home but a few times last school year, but they've each asked numerous times they'd like to walk home from school, I would probably feel safer they walked together. but my first graderearlier and isn't able to wait the thirty minutes there alone due to schools rules. Our house is but five or six blocks away from school, and all blocks between are residential, (aside from the Catholic High School which she cuts through the field of as a shortcut. I am still a little nervous having her walk home from school but doesn't every mom worried about their kids when they're not under their supervision? I wouldn't have thought twice about allowing her to walk home from school in the first grade so I am questioning if my son should be able to?not sure the reason being is difference of a girl in a boy or the fact that my son is extremely more independent then she was even 8 years old . Please help me determinethis give me some input and experiences if you would!? ! Thank you!


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Chet - posted on 08/28/2014




First you should confirm with the school that your son is even allowed to walk home on his own. Some schools won't allow children under a certain age, or in certain grades, to leave the school unaccompanied. At our school kids are supposed to be in at least grade 3, although, they aren't super strict about it and have let 8 year olds in grade 2 go by themselves.

I'm actually really surprised that your daughter isn't allowed to wait the thirty minutes for your son. Most schools would rather see a child in first grade have a sibling to walk with them than enforce a rule that would make a child that young walk alone.

In any case, you just need to consider the risks for each child. Does your son have to cross streets and can he do it safely? Is your son likely to get distracted and stop to play on the way home? Can you trust your son to always take the same route so you can walk that route and find him if you need to?

Our oldest had to take the bus in grade 1, and she walked to the bus stop on her own a couple of times. She didn't love doing it though. She was in grade 3 when she started walking on her own to school regularly, and our younger daughter was in grade 2 (but she was 8). We live in the city though, and the kids do have to cross streets with a small amount of actual traffic.

Our son will be in grade 1 this year, and he won't be walking on his own. The school is only about 350 metres away, but he can't cross the streets alone. Drivers won't see him behind all of the cars parallel parked on the street.

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