Lessons to be learned in the wake of tragic loss

My heart goes out to the parents, families and friends of the youngsters who have been killed on our Doncaster roads in recent weeks, in a pair of horrific car accidents. Their grief, and their loss is incalculable and inconsolable.

But I’ve been struggling to come to terms with what was said by some of those in various authorities just after the recent tragedy – that it was the responsibility of schools to teach the pupils in their care about the dangers of driving.

Is it really? Sorry and all that, but don’t the teachers have enough to do already? Teachers are there to teach their subject, not to be driving instructors – moral guardianship only goes so far.

One headmaster once told me bluntly that his responsibilities end as soon as his pupils leave the school gates. An unconventional view, you might think, but in this case he’s got a point.

It’s surely the job of the police and the fire services to carry on with the superb work that they do in our schools and communities, telling pupils about the bare and basic facts of life on the roads, and that driving a car is, in effect, driving a lethal weapon, no matter how old you are - that innocent people do get killed when things go horribly wrong.