School resumes this week through Sedona and the Verde Valley.

With school back in session, it means more children will be on the sidewalks and streets early in the morning and in the afternoon.

For most of children, back-to-school is nothing new, but for others, walking, biking or taking the bus to school is a new activity and some may not necessarily be the safest or aware of traffic or the rules.

Early in the morning, be aware of children waiting for the bus on curbs and corners. Make note of bus stops and be sure to drive safely and slowly in these areas. Children can dart into traffic unexpectedly or may not look both ways before crossing the street. Kids may also be a little sleepy in the morning and may not pay attention on their walk. I know I didn’t discover the redemptive joy of coffee until my last years of college, so elementary and high school mornings were always a blur.

Likewise, children who bike to school may not be aware of the rules of the road. Be patient if a young cyclist isn’t riding safely. If your child or a child you know is biking to school, remind him or her to ride with the flow of traffic, obey all traffic signals and wear a helmet.

Teenage drivers are also on the road, some driving alone for the first time, others having only driven alone for a few months. While most teens are respectful about taking the family car to school or exceptionally careful about driving a vehicle they spent their own, hard-earned money to buy, sometimes teens forget they’re maneuvering several hundred pounds of steel.

Likewise, parents taking their children to school may be distracted and forget to signal, merge or make the turn to school in time. Be wary when approaching roads leading to area schools.

Remember to be safe around school buses. When a school bus halts and the stop sign comes out, you are required to stop, even if in the oncoming lane.

With school back in session during an election year, the Beaver Creek, Camp Verde, Clarkdale-Jerome Cottonwood-Oak Creek, Mingus Union High and Sedona-Oak Creek school districts will all also be holding elections to fill open seats on their respective Governing Boards.

Electing qualified representatives to these boards are vital to our children’s education. We recommend getting to know your local school’s leaders, reelecting those who’ve done good work and electing replacements for those who haven’t.

Sedona, in particular, needs new leadership after the last few contentious and disastrous few years, and fortunately there are five new candidates running for those seats.

We will be covering the elections in the months to come.