When kids begin making their way to the classroom in the coming days, it'll be the first time students and drivers will be on the roads together since the pandemic closed schools in March.

Cst. Scott Stajcer, with the Nottawasaga OPP, says officers are reminding drivers to slow down.

"With schools becoming a lot busier in the next week or so and people not being used to it obviously since march schools have been closed and we need to take extra precautions to make sure schools are safe," says Stajcer.

Most of the schools across the region are in community safety zones, but according to police, speed is still an issue with drivers despite fines doubled in these areas.

One of the areas of concern is County Road 10 near Nottawasaga Pines Secondary School. The speed limit changes from 50 to 80 km/hr just metres from the school's parking lot, but police say drivers are putting the pedal down well before the 80 zone, potentially putting the students in harm's way.

"If kids are walking on the sidewalk and there's an accident, or someone loses control, speeds are a high-risk accident, and I would hate to see children get hurt," says Stajcer.

Speeding is also concerning to many living near Our Lady of Grace Catholic School on Roth St.

Despite the 40 km/h safety zone, resident Stephanie Kramer says some days it feels like a drag race near the school.

"Especially when school starts, people park bumper to bumper along the road and people are still driving pretty fast down the road, and kids just jump out between the cars trying to cross the road, and you can barely see them," says Kramer.

Meanwhile, officers will also put the focus on school buses. As kids are getting on or off, police say some drivers still aren't getting the message.

"They're expecting drivers to be stopped," says Stajcer.

"If kids are running out going home, we don't want an accident to occur, and when those stop signs are there, we need drivers to obey the stop sign."

If a driver does pass a school bus with its lights flashing, it's a charge of fail to stop for a bus. For a first offence, the driver could see fines of up to $2,000.