Safe Routes to School Program

SAFE Routes to SCHOOL 

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Welcome to the Virginia Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Program!

If you’re new to SRTS or you’ve laid the foundation for a SRTS program in your community, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve assembled all that materials you’ll need to grow your SRTS program on this page.  If you think something is missing or you would like more individualized guidance, contact us on the toll-free hotline at 1-855-601-7787 or contact one of our Local Technical Assistance Coordinators.

Click to view in PDF.We have divided the kit into three sections:

For ease of navigation, you may find some items in multiple places.

Feedback is Welcome!

Tell us how these materials are working for you. We want to know about your successes and challenges.
Before you begin, review this letter from Rob Williams, the State SRTS Coordinator for Virginia.

General Information

Resources to help acquaint you with safe routes to school is in this section. You’ll also find materials that will be helpful when talking about the program with others who are unfamiliar with the SRTS movement.View brochure in PDf

  • Overview of the federal SRTS Program – Safe Routes to School is a federally funded program that is administered at the state-level. The National Center for Safe Routes to School serves as the clearinghouse for the federal program. The National Center has put together a well-designed flyer that introduces the main principles of the program. This flyer is available in both English and Spanish translations.
  • Introduction to the Virginia Program – The SRTS program is funded federally, but it is administered at the state-level. This means every state approaches SRTS a bit differently. Download this brochure that explains Virginia’s SRTS program.
  • Talking points – If you’ve been asked to speak about the general SRTS program, reviewing this resource is a good starting point. The talking points summarize the program neatly and have facts and figures that are updated annually.
  • Important VA Contacts - Everyone you need to troubleshoot your program is located here.

How-to Tip Sheets and Guides

Do you have an activity or program in mind, but you’re not sure how to get started? Begin your planning here with a series of Learn it. Do it. Live it. tip sheets and guide to benefit from the experience of others.

  • Steps to Creating a Safe Routes to School Program – This four-page Learn it. Do it. Live it. offers 8 steps that have proven effective for other communities in starting a local SRTS program.
  • Student Travel Tally– The best thing you can do for your program is get baseline data. It’s always easier to see how you’re doing if you documented your starting point. Each fall, we encourage schools to record how students are getting to school. The tally only takes a few minutes over two days, and it’s even easier when you follow the steps in this tip sheet!  

  • Conducting a Walk Audit or Bike Audit – Before promoting an event or program that encourages students to walk and bike to school, it can be helpful to test the walking and biking routes first. Think about bringing community stakeholders along. Whether the walk audit is conducted by a team champion, walking school bus leader or a community group, this Learn it. Do it. Live it. tip sheet can help make the most of your audit.
  • Walkability and Bikability Checklists – The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information has created checklists that can be a useful tool when recording what you see on walk audit or bike audit.
  • Observing Arrival and Dismissal – You can learn a lot about walking and bicycling to school at your school by observing arrival or dismissal. We’ve created a Field Exercise Guide to help. The Guide is based on best practices in this type of field work from schools across the country.  Use it as part of your local SRTS program start-up or to get ‘existing conditions’ information that is required for the SRTS Programs and Activities Plan.
  • Including Students with Disabilities – Safe Routes to School programs and activities can and should include students of all abilities. For tips and guidance on ways to make sure everyone can participate, read the guide created by the National Center on Physical Activity and Disability (NCPAD) and the National Center for Safe Routes to School.
  • Event Ideas – Walk or bike to school events can be as simple as encouraging kids to walk to bike on a particular day.  This Learn it. Do it. Live it. tip sheet describes several great ideas other local SRTS programs have used successfully.
  • Going Green with SRTS – Safe Routes to School is a great way to teach students and families about reducing their impact on the environment.  This Learn it. Do it. Live it. tip sheet provides project  ideas and strategies that schools can use to highlight environmental benefits of walking and bicycling throughout the school year.
  • Ways to Participate – There are many different ways to show students, families and communities that walking or bicycling to school is a fun and feasible way to travel. In general, events are usually one of three different types, with many variations to each. The basics of these three event types are explained in this tip sheet.  Use it to get some basic ideas, then brainstorm dozens of ways to customize these concepts!
  • How to Organize Park and Walk Sites – Students can still participate if it’s not feasible to start the journey to school from home.  A key strategy for many schools is to establish sites where students can be dropped off and finish the trek to school by walking or biking.  Information on how to organize park and walk sites are included in this.  Learn it.  Do it.  Live it.

  • Getting Started Guide for Event Organizers – Walk and Bike to School Day Events are great ways to kick-off a program. These events can be as big or small, simple or complex as you like! Whatever the flavor of your event, this is a good resource to turn to for planning a successful event.
  • First-time Tips for Planning a SRTS Event – This tip sheet has great advice from seasoned event organizers.  If this is your first event (or you’re looking for ways to plan a smooth event), review this short tip sheet.
  • How to Plan a Walk or Bike to School Event in 7 Days-- Do you only have a week or two to pull off a walk/bike to school event? Don’t panic! You can plan an event in as little time as a week. Look over this planning guide to organize your steps over the course of seven days.
  • Tips for Parents and Other Adults for Teaching Pedestrian Safety to Children Guide – Healthy habits start at home. This guide is aimed at reminding parents how to practice safe walking skills at home with their children. This is a great resource to reference in preparation for a Walk or Bike to School Day event.
  • How to Plan a Walk or Bike to School Even in 7 Days – Do you only have a week or two to pull off a walk/bike to school event? Don’t panic! You can plan an event in as little time as a week.  Look over this planning guide to organize your steps over the course of seven days.

Walk and Bike to School Day Materials

Walk and Bike to School Day events are great ways to kick-off a new SRTS program. These events quickly turn into annual and seasonal traditions that students look forward to each year. They have the added benefit of being a fun, inclusive event for the whole community. Consider using the resources below to help you make the most out of your first (or next) event.

  • Getting Started Guide for Event Organizers – Walk and Bike to School Day Events are great ways to kick-off a program. These events can be as big or small, simple or complex as you like! Whatever the flavor of your event, this is a good resource to turn to for planning a successful event.
  • First-time Tips for Planning a SRTS Event – This tip sheet has great advice from seasoned event organizers.  If this is your first event (or you’re looking for ways to plan a smooth event), review this short tip sheet.
  • How to Plan a Walk or Bike to School Event in 7 Days – Do you only have a week or two to pull off a walk/bike to school event? Don’t panic! You can plan an event in as little time as a week. Look over this planning guide to organize your steps over the course of seven days.
  • SRTS event materials – Use the materials in on our Marketing toolkit to plan and host your Safe Routes to School program activities.

 

Page last modified: April 22, 2014