Sixteen Shasta County schools will join schools from around the world to celebrate International Walk to School Day on Wednesday, October 4, 2017. Local elected officials, principals and parents will lead “walking school buses,” where groups of students walk to school that day. A few Shasta County schools already have daily walking school buses as a way for kids to get to school on time.
“International Walk to School Day is a reminder of an additional transportation choice to get kids to school. Kids enjoy this event and often ask if they can walk to school every day,” says Sara Sundquist, Shasta Safe Routes to School Program Coordinator. Some schools use daily walking school buses to reduce traffic congestion and to get students to school on time. Stipends are available for schools to pay walking school bus coordinators. Training and funding is provided by the Shasta Safe Routes to School Program.
This 21st annual International Walk to School Day is expected to include students from all 50 states and 40 countries. Walk to School Day events create safer routes for walking and bicycling and emphasize the importance of physical activity among children, pedestrian safety, decreased traffic congestion and reduced air pollution. Schools participating in Shasta County include Anderson Heights, Anderson Middle, Burney, Columbia, Cypress, Junction, Happy Valley Primary, Manzanita, Meadow Lane, Millville, PACE Academy, Rother, Sequoia, Shasta Lake, Sycamore, and Turtle Bay. More than 1,400 kids, parents and community leaders will gather at specific locations to walk to school together. As always, drivers should be on alert for children walking near school zones.
In addition to Walk to School Day, pedestrian safety lessons will be given to all second graders in the Redding School District and Cascade Union Elementary School District. Pete Walker, the pedestrian safety mascot, will visit several schools at arrival and dismissal times to help students cross busy streets and distribute pedestrian safety information.
Walk to School Day is organized by the Shasta County Safe Routes to School program, which works with schools to improve pedestrian safety and to promote walking to school. To assist with this event or start a walking school bus at your school, contact Sara Sundquist at (530) 245-6457.
For additional information, please visit these web sites:
Healthy Shasta www.healthyshasta.org/saferoutes.htm
International Walk to School in the USA www.walkbiketoschool.org
National Center for Safe Routes to School www.saferoutesinfo.org