What is Safe Routes to Schools?
511CC has been assisting adults with information on ways to minimize the use of the car for errands and commutes for 20 years. However lasting behavior change starts at a young age and with Safe Routes to Schools, walking, bicycling, and alternative transportation education is being implemented in the primary schools.
Safe Routes to Schools programs across the country educate school-aged children and their parents on ways to bike and walk to school safely with practical hands-on training.
In Contra Costa County, students at participating schools enjoy a range of similar activities through Peace on the Streets: Ride On!, including:
- Road simulations and bike rodeos in Physical Education classes
- Parent Education Meeting with local police, health professionals, and city staff
- Commute Alternative Challenge Day
- A stunt and safety assembly.
In October 2010, 511 Contra Costa staff developed the first week-long Peace on the Streets; Ride On! course. The program had two principle goals in five schools:
- To educate and inspire middle school students to bike and walk safely to school
- To identify existing barriers to biking and walking at each particular school site while also assessing the school’s various transportation-related needs
Thanks to strong community support, each Peace on the Streets: Ride On! school was able to lower its single-occupancy vehicle trips by 44 percent on Commute Alternative Challenge Days. Since that enormous success, 511 Contra Costa continues rolling out the program to other middle schools through 2013. Martinez Mr. High and Douglas Adams Jr. High School will have host Peace of the Streets: Ride On! events later this fall. Would you like Peace on the Streets: Ride On! at your child’s middle school? Contact Street Smarts Diablo.
International Walk to School Day is October 3, 2012. On top of that 511 Contra Costa will celebrate International Walk to School Day in Central and East Contra Costa by supporting with posters, banners, tally sheets, and incentives to participating schools. Do you want to celebrate International Walk to School Day at your school? Contact Kayla Jossey. *Peace on the Streets; Ride On! and support for International Walk to School Day is offered to schools located in Antioch, Bay Point, Brentwood, Byron, Clayton, Concord, Knightsen, Oakley, Martinez, Pittsburg, Pleasant Hill, and Walnut Creek.