Although summer doesn’t officially end until Sept. 22, the thousands of Louisiana children returning to school this month already know the jig is up. Vacation season has passed, and another academic year has begun.

That should mean extra vigilance, we hope, for area motorists traveling in school zones. Kids are especially distracted in their first days of school, underscoring the need for drivers to pay attention when passing local campuses.

A new state law that took effect Aug. 1 bans the use of cellphones while driving in school zones. We can’t predict how well the new law will be enforced, but driving while phoning is never a good idea, and we hope drivers will be particularly careful around schools.

Slower speed zones around area schools also go into effect with the start of every school year. It’s time, once again, to put on the brakes when approaching neighborhood campuses. We hope that children have a safe and happy school year.