Safe Routes to School
Safe Routes to School (SRTS) is a federal, state and local effort to enable and encourage children, including those with disabilities, to walk and bicycle to school. SRTS facilitates the planning, development and implementation of projects that improve safety and air quality, as well as reduce traffic and fuel consumption around schools. The goals of the SRTS program are to encourage more students to walk and bike to school where it is safe to do so and to improve the areas where it is not safe.
Greater Mercer TMA has partnered with the New Jersey Department of Transportation to implement the statewide SRTS program in schools throughout Mercer and Ocean counties. GMTMA is here to work with your school and town on a wide variety of SRTS programs, including:
Pedestrian Parade Challenge
Your child maybe eligible for a free ticket to a Trenton Thunder Minor League Baseball game! He/she may also participate in a pre-game Safety Parade around the field! For more information, click here.
Walking School Bus
A walking school bus is a group of chaperoned students who walk to school together. Chaperones are usually parents or teachers. Walking school buses can be held every day, weekly, once a month, once a year or at anytime that is appropriate for your school. GMTMA can help organize buses, plan routes and give guidance. Click here to download a Walking School Bus brochure.
Frequent Walker Programs
Many schools motivate students to walk/bike to school with "frequent walker/bicyclist" programs. Students receive a "punch card" that tracks how many days they have walked or bicycled to school. Incentives vary. GMTMA can help organize and structure the program.
"Golden Sneaker"Award/Classroom Competitions
Which homeroom has the most students who walk/bike to school this week/month/ year? That is the motivation behind the "Golden Sneaker" award or similar classroom competitions. GMTMA can assist your school to develop a customized program.
Bike and Pedestrian Safety Presentations
GMTMA staff is available to make safety presentations to students on a variety of bicycle and pedestrian safety topics. Presentations may be customized to your school’s particular needs and age groups.
Bicycle Rodeos/Skills Clinics
Bike Rodeos are a great way to reinforce basic skills and teach valuable safety information. Held during or after school, these "on bike" events can be held in the parking lot. GMTMA can help organize these events.
Students can get involved in improving the walkability and bikeability of their community by conducting "audits" of the area around the school. GMTMA can provide students with audit checklists and facilitate this outdoor activity.
Other Classroom Activities
There are many ways to incorporate walking and bicycling into existing curriculum. Science and math classes are particularly suited to measuring the impact of more students walking/bicycling, tracking the number of steps that students are walking, etc. GMTMA can provide curriculum assistance.
GMTMA can assist in identifying funding, provide grant writing assistance, facilitate meetings with local, county and state officials and provide letters of support as appropriate.
For additional information on SRTS programs, email Rebecca Hersh at firstname.lastname@example.org.