Parents are fearing for the safety of their children after a Croydon school changed its opening times, leaving crowds of pupils waiting for entry on a busy road.

As of last week, Oasis Academy Shirley Park (Long lane Campus), opens its gates to junior school pupils at 8.35am, where it previously allowed children into the playground at 8.25.

Since many parents are unable to drop their children off at the later time due to work commitments, children are left to wait for entry outside the school gates, crowding the congested road's narrow pavement.

"It's an accident waiting to happen," one father, who wishes to remain anonymous, told Croydon Guardian.

"This might not seem like a lot of time difference between the old and new policy, but what the school failed to consider was the fact that this new drop off time would leave several parents late for work and also create a congested area around the school entrance.

"The pavement on Longhurst road in front of the school gates is narrow and the cars, some driving fast, are inches away from the kerb.

"I myself have witnessed cars a mere inch or two away from hitting children as they stand waiting for entrance."

The change in policy was introduced last week, without prior warning.

The parent continued: "Our frustration is that none of us were informed.

"For working parents with a limited time window to drop the kids off in the morning, it's causing great difficulties."

According to the school, the later opening time ensures children are supervised at all times.

A spokesperson for the academy said: "Oasis Academy Shirley Park’s first priority is the safety and wellbeing of our pupils and staff.

"Our junior-aged pupils begin school at 8.45am.

"Staff supervise the school playground from 8.35am with the understanding that no children are unaccompanied in the playground before this.

"This has been the case for a number of years. Staff have grown concerned at the number of children left unsupervised in the playground before this time, and so now open the gates at 8:35am.

"As alternative, families are welcome to use our daily breakfast club that is available from 7:30am.

"With regards to safe access, we are fortunate to have two access points to our playground for junior pupils. We encourage those families that arrive before the gates open to use the entrance on Ritchie Road, which is less busy.

"If any of our parents have concerns on this, or any other issue, they are encouraged to contact the academy directly. "