Safe Routes to School
Welcome to Virginia Safe Routes to School!
If you’re new to Safe Routes to School, click here for an introduction letter to the program from Virginia’s Safe Routes to School Coordinator Rob Williams. And be sure to check out this program brochure for some quick facts about Virginia Safe Routes to School.
The Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program has been active in Virginia since 2007 and helps schools and communities across the state make walking and biking to school a safe, convenient, natural activity.
September 18 - SRTS Event Participation All Stars
Take a quick break from your Walk to School Day and Student Travel Tally Week preparations and join us in congratulating last year’s top participating schools. The ‘Hall of Fame’ schools lead their regions with the most all-time SRTS event participation and the ‘All Star’ schools participated in the most events during the 2016-2017 school year.
Would you like to see your school on the list next year? Be sure to participate in all four statewide and national SRTS events this year: Walk to School Day on October 4, Student Travel Tally Week in September or October, Crossing Guard Appreciation Day next February 14, and Bike to School Day next May 9. Learn more about each event by clicking the links above.
August 15 - Walk to School Day Registration Open!
It’s time to register for International Walk to School Day! On October 4, students, families, school leaders, community partners, and elected officials in Virginia and around the country will celebrate the benefits of walking to school.
The Walk to School Day movement grows every year. Last year, there were a record-setting 5,086 schools that participated nationwide - 311 of them in Virginia. These schools and their communities used the day to build visibility for both the benefits of walking and any needed safety improvements.
Register your school to help us reach our goal of 325 events in 2017 and earn a Walk to School Day decal. While the official day is October 4, Virginia schools can host a Walk to School event any day in October and be counted. Also, be sure to visit the Walk to School Day page for event ideas and free resources.
August 10 - Fall Due Date for Walkabout Mini-grant Applications
Want to learn more about the walking and bicycling conditions in the area around your school? Then apply for a Walkabout Mini-grant by September 28, 2017. Walkabout Mini-grant recipients receive a hands-on walking and bicycling infrastructure survey and written Walkabout Report coordinated by the Local Technical Assistance Coordinator serving their region.
Visit the Walkabout Mini-grants page to learn more and complete the online application.
Shrevewood Elementary School’s Healthy Living Festival, Falls Church VA
The Safe Routes to School Program is a federally-funded program created under Section 1404 of the 2005 Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU).
As written in SAFETEA-LU, the purpose of the SRTS program is to:
- Enable and encourage children, including those with disabilities, to walk and bicycle to school
- Make bicycling and walking to school a safer and more appealing transportation alternative, thereby encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle from an early age
- Facilitate the planning, development, and implementation of projects and activities that will improve safety and reduce traffic, fuel consumption, and air pollution in the vicinity of schools
In July 2013, MAP-21 – the new federal transportation bill -- became law, folding SRTS into a new Transportation Alternatives program. SRTS projects are now eligible to compete for funding alongside other programs, including the Transportation Enhancements program and Recreational Trails program. VDOT’s Local Assistance Division is managing the Transportation Alternatives program. Click here for more information.
Non-infrastructure funding from SAFETEA-LU is still available through the Virginia Safe Routes to School Program. More information is available on the Travel Plans and Grants landing page.
Virginia SRTS Program Strategic Plan
The VDOT Safe Routes to School Program completed a Strategic Plan to guide our work through 2017. The Plan is available for download by clicking on the cover.
Robert J. Williams
Safe Routes to Schools Program coordinator
Transportation and Mobility Planning Division
Virginia Department of Transportation
1401 E. Broad St.
Richmond, VA 23219