The school run is a major source of congestion and air pollution during the morning peak, with as many as one in four cars on the road taking children to school. Childhood obesity is at record levels while school transport budgets are facing an unprecedented squeeze. Increasing the level of active travel to school offers a solution to all of these challenges.
Is your school part of our Travel2School project?
York has its own dedicated Active Travel officer from Sustrans who delivers the Travel2School project and works with schools across the City.
In partnership with schools, our officer helps young people travel actively and safely. The project supports children, staff and families to lead healthy, active lives and engage with them about the concept of ‘active travel’ (walking, cycling and scooting). The impact of our work within a year, through a planned programme of activities providing information, resources and encouragement, can be enormous. Our officer continues to support the school beyond this period, as it increasingly takes the lead in activities.
For the latest news on Travel2School in York, download a copy of our latest newsletter from the bottom right of this page.
Sustrans and Travel2School
Sustrans is the charity making it easier for people to walk and cycle. The Travel2School project creates a culture of active travel within participating project schools. We aim to:
Increase the number of young people travelling to school actively by foot, bike or scooter.
Reduce the number of young people travelling to school by car – with a shift to active travel modes.
Other benefits of the project include increased levels of physical activity and wellbeing among pupils. As well as reduced car usage and increased active travel outside of school among pupils, parents and teachers.
How does Travel2School increase levels of active travel by children?
By working with children in schools to give them the skills and confidence to travel under their own steam, and give their parents and teachers the peace of mind to let them
By creating a culture of active travel in the school community, inspiring staff, children and their parents to get involved and generating positive publicity, with far-reaching benefits beyond the school gate
By partnering with others to create safe routes for children, and others, to get about more by foot and bike.
The Sustrans officer will:
Work with the school management team to gain their full support for the programme
Plan and deliver a structured programme of cycling, scooting and walking related presentations, assemblies, lessons, activities and events to:
explain the benefits of active travel to the children, their parents and teachers
generate positive publicity and motivate children, parents, staff and community members to join in
give people confidence to choose active travel modes for more of their everyday journeys
Provide training opportunities and support for school champions, teachers, parents and volunteers, enabling them to start taking the lead on activities themselves
Access the support and resources of the local authority and other partners to help promote cycling and active travel to school
Provide ongoing support for schools as they progress through the project to encourage long-term commitment to a culture of cycling and walking
Making it easier for people to walk and cycle
Sustrans also works with partner organisations to make streets around schools safer for children. This includes improving crossings or building new walking and cycling routes to link schools to their communities and to the National Cycle Network. We can also deliver a community-led design approach.
The evidence shows that creating safe routes to and around schools, combined with a focus in school on walking and cycling, achieves the greatest success.
Contact York’s Sustrans Active Travel officer, Natalie Watson to find out more about taking part in the Travel2School project. You can call Natalie on 07974 599734 or email Natalie.firstname.lastname@example.org