Education in schools
A community-based measure influencing knowledge, attitude and supporting corrective and appropriate behaviour.
Can be applied generally in relation to dangers of railway trespass, but can relate to local issues such as a hotspot location – where children/young adults are commonly involved in trespass events.
By whom? - May be delivered by teachers and/or specialists in trespass prevention and those with an understanding of law, risk
Applicability / suitability for trespass types
At locations where children are a significant or over-represented group identified as trespassing in an area and targeting of a local school would give an opportunity to communicate relevant messages
Trespasser type = Children
Trespass events = Convenience, antisocial behaviour, graffiti, hangout, recreation.
Observed behaviours = Crossing the track, items laid on the track, children observed on the track or other railway locations.
Potential Motivations = Shorten distance, save time; self-expression, moral judgement and reasoning, peer pressure; recognition, rebellion, territorial; seeking place of seclusion.
Has been found to be moderately effective, but there have been better results where this is combined with other prevention methods (e.g. enforcement, fencing and signage).
Some children (e.g. those showing early signs of delinquency or with behavioural problems) may be less influenced by standard. educational programme – may be better targeted by the intervention - Targeting at risk groups.
Can have early impact on changing attitudes, but behavioural change may take years to show any effect.
To be effective education will need to be sustained (i.e. repeated at least yearly to reach each new year of children in a relevant year group).
Factors influencing effectiveness
Reinforce with other methods (such as enforcement, restitution).
Provide an appropriate message - clear, current and relevant to a type of trespass event.
How to apply or implement, including dependencies
Start safety education early e.g. resources are available to reach children from the age of 5. These include Thomas the Tank Engine (Stay Safe with Thomas) for key stage one (5-7 year olds) and Fun Kids (Track Pack) for key stage 2 children (7-11 year olds). The Industry Trespass Strategy highlights the need to convey safety messaging to children at a young age and reinforce it as they grow.
Should be delivered in an interesting and engaging way, with an age appropriate message.
Educate teachers and parents about trespass risk to help reinforce the message.
Can be integrated with the educational curriculum.
Deliver similar/same message in other information and awareness raising initiatives.
Requires support/agreement from schools to provide access to children and suitable session time and location.
Requires person/s to deliver training.
Potentially low cost – if supported by volunteers, however, requires sustained effort over a period of time and means the outlay in costs/resource will continue.