Safe Routes to School
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Welcome to Safe Routes to Schools (SRTS). Click here to read a welcome letter from Virginia's Safe Routes to School Coordinator.
The SRTS program has been active in Virginia since 2007 and helps schools and communities make walking and biking to school a safe, convenient, natural activity.
If you’re new to SRTS, be sure to check out this program brochure for some quick facts about Virginia Safe Routes to School.
May 18 - Recording from May Conference Call is Now Available!
Thank you again to everyone who attended our May Quarterly Conference Call. The Virginia SRTS team enjoyed using the time to collaborate across the state. For those who missed the call, or would like to review discussion topics, the recording can be found here as well as the slides.
For those interested in attending future calls, be sure to visit the Events page to add it to your calendar!
April 4 - Parent & Caregiver Survey is now LIVE!
How do students travel to school? How much physical activity are children in Virginia getting?
If you're a parent or caregiver in Virginia, Virginia Safe Routes to School wants to hear from you! Click here to take our Spring 2023 Parent Survey. The survey takes less than 10 minutes to complete, will be available in both English and Spanish, and will help us understand student travel and physical activity habits. The survey will close on May 5, 2023.
Take the survey in English - https://tinyurl.com/VA-SRTS-2023-EN
Take the survey in Spanish - https://tinyurl.com/VA-SRTS-2023-SPA
April 3 - Get Ready for Bike & Roll to School Day!
Bike to School Day is on May 3, 2023, and we couldn’t be more excited! If you haven’t done so already, please register today to be sure your event is included in the statewide and national count. Head to walkbiketoschool.org/registration to register your biking event.
While May 5 is this year’s official Bike School Day date, communities are welcome to celebrate any day in May that best fits their schedules.
For event inspiration, check out the resources on our Bike to School Day page.
Program Purpose and Goals
The SRTS Program is federally funded, created under Section 1404 of the 2005 Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU).
The purpose of SRTS 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 near 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 manages the Transportation Alternatives program. More information >>
SRTS Building Blocks
Virginia SRTS has a new framework to guide local programs. Like you, it's goal-oriented, with the ultimate goal of helping more students to safely walk and bicycle to school. The framework has five building blocks:
- Equitable and Sustainable Program
- Safe Streets
- Welcoming Campuses
- Safe Behaviors
- Supportive Culture
Equitable and Sustainable Program is the most important of these building blocks, and the foundation for your program. It helps you evaluate and build support for your program so it can continue from year to year. It also ensures that the program is equitable and takes proactive steps to reach out to and benefit students who are Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), students with disabilities, students from low-income households, and other disadvantaged groups. Learn more about the building blocks and example activities in this document.
Success Book and Strategic Plan
In 2020, the Virginia SRTS team wrote the Virginia Safe Routes to School Success Book, which documents the program’s history and accomplishments from 2005 to 2020. Click here to read the Success Book.
The first 2012-2017 Five-Year Strategic Plan guided the program through some major changes, creating the program structure and elements that exist today. Over the years the program has been fortunate to have consistent funding, but the funding situation has changed.
In spring 2021, VDOT convened stakeholders to develop a new strategic plan that can be used to secure dedicated funding and increase the effectiveness and reach of the program over the next five years. Click here to read the 2021-2026 Virginia SRTS Strategic Plan.
Transportation and Mobility Planning Division
Virginia Department of Transportation
1401 E. Broad St.
Richmond, Virginia 23219