Representatives from two rural schools and one playcentre in the Bay of Plenty say a blanket approach to speed limits is needed to keep their kids safe.
The Rotorua Lakes Council's strategy, policy and finance committee will hear submissions on the Speed Limit Review 2021 today.
The review happens about every three years and seeks to make local roads consistent with national speed management.
There are 56 local roads with proposed speed limit changes.
The review currently includes proposals to drop speed limits outside of Rerewhakaaitu School, Broadlands School, and Waikite Valley School from 70km/h to a 40km/h variable speed limit during school hours.
Rerewhakaaitu School principal Rick Whalley has been campaigning for reduced speed limits outside rural schools nationwide for some time.
"It's really a no-brainer. Lower the [speed limit] so our kids are safe," Whalley told the Rotorua Daily Post in December.
However, the proposed speed limits outside of Kaharoa School, Ngākuru Playcentre, and Ngākuru School would only drop by 10km/h, from 70km/h to 60km/h.
Ngākuru School board trustee and playcentre member of 12 years Liza Macartney said she did not understand the differences in approach.
"Surely one size fits all," Macartney said.
She said logging trucks, large tractors and stock trucks frequently drove past the school.
"They come around the corner from where the limit is 100kph.
"Then they hit the 70km/h zone and they may slow down but it's not enough."
Macartney said parents often crossed the road in front of the playcentre with three or four children under 5 years old.
"You've got to be very, very careful.
"The kids can just run out. We're constantly having to stop them."
"When you drive past a school bus you have to drive at 20kph but when our children walk home you can just zoom past them at 70kph?
"It just doesn't make sense."
Ngākuru School principal Rachel Weinberg said vehicles tended to treat the stretch of Whirinaki Valley Rd as "open road".
"Being on a straight actually makes drivers speed up.
"I just think it's interesting how different rural schools have got different proposed speed limits even when we're battling the same problems.
"It would be better if drivers didn't have to guess."
Kaharoa School principal Rose Powley said, in her view, there was no reason for differences in speed limits outside of rural schools.
"Every child is important," Powley said.
"Being a rural school doesn't mean we don't have a lot of traffic passing by.
"The safety of our tamariki is paramount.
"No one wants to lose a child."
Kaharoa School PTA member Michelle Marino shared an online petition on Facebook earlier this week.
"We propose that the speed limit is reduced from 70km/h to 40km/h," the petition stated.
"The 40km/h speed limit will be much safer for drivers entering and exiting the main school carpark and when children are being picked up from Kaharoa Hall."
Marino's Facebook post stated she would be bringing the petition before the council today.
In Marino's submission to the council on the speed limit review, she said 60km/h was "still too fast".
"We need a 40km/h variable sign like what is going outside Waikite Valley School, with the 60 during out of school hours."
The council opened the review for public feedback from March 20 to April 21 this year.
More than 100 submissions were received by the committee for this review. Tomorrow, they will hear from eight submitters in person.
The Rotorua Daily Post asked the council why there were different speed limits proposed for different schools in the review. The council did not respond by deadline.
A spokeswoman from Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency said the current Speed Management Guide and Safer Journeys for Schools Guide encourage 60km/h variable speed limits outside rural schools where there is an identified turning traffic risk.
The Government's draft Land Transport Rule: Setting of Speed Limits 2021 is currently out for consultation. The 2017 Rule does not set any requirements for speed limits around schools.