Today is Walk (and Bike) to School Day

From the Safe Routes website:

On Wednesday, October 7th, students, parents, teachers and local officials in several thousand communities in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia will walk to school together to celebrate the 13th annual International Walk to School Day. These events also kick off October as International Walk to School Month, the month when communities in over 40 countries will participate in daily, weekly or monthly events designed to raise awareness about the many benefits of safely walking and bicycling to school.

Read more @ Safe Routes

[via Cyclelicious]

10 Responses to “Today is Walk (and Bike) to School Day”

  • David says:

    My youngest child and I have ridden to school just about everyday this year so far. 5 1/2 miles each way. Just another school year.

    My oldest child is 16 and would rather ride the bus than ride with the old man….(-;

    Where as my youngest child (age 14) who is significantly autistic and in High School, only does 3 hours a day at school, from 9:00 AM to noon. The tandem is our school bus.

    Plus the school felt it only fair that since I was providing transportation that they should pay me for my travel expenses. They know very well that we ride a bicycle most of the year instead of driving but they said never the less, we will pay you for your calories burned, here is $1,200.00 a year for travel expenses.

    Does this $1,200.00 put us in the “Professional” level of cycling?….LOL

  • Fritz says:

    @David – Your son’s school pays you for the bike ride?! That’s pretty amazing!

  • Josef says:

    Where I ride (and commute to work by bike), many kids bike to school every day. Most do this on side roads and/or bike routes that are separated from car traffic. That is good and I did it myself from 1st to 13th grade. Actually, safety of school kids probably contributed more to developing a bicycle infrastructure in my part of Germany than anything else.

    For the fast commuter like myself, however, this has a downside. Many kids don’t run lights on their bikes even in the dark (not working, slows ‘em down, uncool) and quite a few are hard to see coming up towards me. Many kids don’t follow any rules, they ride on the left side or wobble in the center of the lane, they ride side by side, three or four of them –- and hardly anyone considers that they might not be the only ones on the trail.
    BTW, the picture on top displays another nuisance of the regular bike commuter: It’s the proud Mummy riding her kid to school or to kindergarten. Of course, baby rides in the center of the lane and Mummy does not remind him/her to ride on the right side and to be mindful of others who might use the same road because baby is so cute … I know I’m a bit sarcastic here but I have seen it hundred of times.

    I try to avoid riding in town between 7.15 and 8 am — it takes too much. Couldn’t avoid it this morning and it was like it always is. Tried to look at it like an anthropologist on a field trip. That helped.

  • David says:

    Hi Fritz

    It’s my daughters school that pays me. It’s a Charter School, a really nice school. I had been taking my daughters to school via bike at the local public elementary school for 6 years before I pulled them out of that system and they never paid me a cent. It was the Charter School who approached me with this. They just told me that they were going to pay me. I don’t mind one bit.

  • David says:

    Hi Josef

    I hate to say this but I rarely see any kids riding bicycles to school. We are rather the odd ducks out.

    I think what you said about safety of school kids being the reason for the development of you bicycle infrastructure is spot on.

    For the most part the “bike paths” here were built to get bikes out of the way of cars with little regard for safety and if I may say so, designed and built rather substandardly by non cycling motorists.

    Perhaps if we could get more kids to ride something could be done about the substandard bicycle facilities here.

  • Josef says:

    David:
    That could well be — unfortunately, your residential areas are laid out in such a way to discourage riding to school for many kids. Here, most kids up to 4th grade could easily walk to school (except for the farm kids, of course), beyond fourth grade most would have less than 4 miles to school.
    That is why the bike routes are packed with kids in the morning — and sure, planners want them out of the way of cars.
    Be that as it may, it did bring about pretty good biking infrastructure in the stretch of the country (which is mostly flat) — ideal terrain also for my Quest, as you could see on my video clips.

    Josef

  • David says:

    Josef

    A few years back the Martha’s Vineyard Joint Transportation Committee of which I am a member hired a summer intern to study traffic patterns for both cyclists and motorists. Part of his study was to interview the Principles (AKA Head Masters ) at the various local schools. A number of these Principles came right out and said that they discouraged students from cycling to school.

    Every day, morning and afternoon, these schools have a long lines of cars, parents dropping off their kids even though buses and bus stops are provided.

    The old school my kids went to, we would ride 3 1/2 miles and were perhaps one of the farthest from that school in the town we live in.

    The Charter School we now belong to, it’s a 5 1/2 mile ride and still there are not very many kids who ride bikes but most do use the buses.

    It’s a different culture we have here that people are adverse to using bicycles and mass transit for transportation.

    In regards to my soon to be Quest. When I’m on my tandem I try to imagine just how the same road will be in the Quest.

    David

  • Cullen says:

    I just found about this today, unfortunately.

    Since my daughter is homeschooled I hope a bike ride to the library would’ve sufficed.

  • Cullen says:

    David,

    It’s terrific that your child’s school monetarily recognizes your bike commute. Hopefully this will get other parents to start doing the same thing with their kids.

    Cullen
    ccarter@new.rr.com

  • David says:

    Cullen

    I would say everyday and any ride that you and your daughter do would be as a ride to school as the world around you is your daughter’s classroom.

    I home school my youngest for 3 years waiting for an opening for her in the Charter School.

    I have to say that I was drop jaw flabbergasted that they would even consider such an idea as paying me to transport my daughter.

    If they had said nothing we would still have continued to ride to school.

    Good People, Good School.

    David

 
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