The Safe Routes to School Engagement Program works with school communities to get students and families excited about walking and biking to school. Whether you’re a parent, teacher, school administrator, or a member of a community group, we can help you plan activities, provide resources, and share digital tools.
To connect with the Safe Routes Engagement Team about any of the topics listed below, email Safe Routes Engagement Coordinator Sahiti Karempudi and include as much of the following information as possible:
- What partnership opportunities are you interested in exploring?
- When would you like to get started?
- Roughly how many people / families will be participating?
Safe Routes staff will reach out if we need any additional info.
Safe Routes can help with the following:
Safe Routes can help plan activities that motivate students to walk and bike to school, including:
Walking School Bus / Bike Train
In a walking school bus or a bike train, children walk or bike to school with one or more adults for at least two weeks. These activities can be as big or small as you want them to be, from two families traveling together to a large group with meeting points, routes, and trained volunteers.
Safe Routes can help you get started and plan a walking school bus or bike train. We can also help you plan a route, pick meeting points, train volunteers, and determine a timetable. Please email Sahiti Karempudi to get started!
If your walking school bus or bike train helps students walk or bike to school over a two-week time period, volunteers can even be classified as paid crossing guards.
“Park a Block and Walk”
Safe Routes encourages families to park a block away from the school and walk to school together. This helps parents avoid drop off/pick up traffic, and helps families spend some extra time together in the morning and afternoon – all while getting fresh air and a few extra steps!
Safe Routes can help you plan a route, pick meeting points, train volunteers, and determine a timetable. Please email Sahiti Karempudi to get started!
Classroom Walking Competitions
In a classroom walking competition, different classes or grades compete to see who can walk the largest most miles during a set time period. Safe Routes can help plan these competitions and provide Safe Routes-branded safety prizes. Please email Sahiti Karempudi to get started!
Traffic observations can help identify traffic issues that make getting to school more difficult. These issues could include needed sidewalk, a change to drop-off/pickup times, and more.
Safe Routes to School staff can provide traffic observations upon request during morning drop off or afternoon pick up. Safe Routes will take notes and make recommendations on actions to take.
Reach out to the Safe Routes to School Engagement Program at least three weeks before you’d like the traffic observation to take place. Then, our staff will reach out and schedule the traffic observation. Please email Sahiti Karempudi to get started!
Lights, Camera, Safety PSA Competition
Safe Routes’ first annual Lights, Camera, Safety Public Service Announcement (PSA) Contest ran from March 10-August 3, 2020. A PSA, or Public Service Announcement, is a video that influences opinions and helps people learn about important topics. In this contest, Austin 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students are invited to create their very own short PSA showing how to walk, bike, and roll to school safely. Stay tuned for updates and learn more on our Lights, Camera, Safety page.
Handouts and Giveaway Items
Safe Routes can provide a number of Safe Routes to School-branded materials and prizes for schools and community groups. Please email Sahiti Karempudi if you would like SRTS branded items for your students.
These items include:
- Pamphlets/One Sheeters
- Flashing lights
- Reflective wrist bands
Not all items may be available in amounts requested.
School Recognition Plans
Coming in Spring 2021, Safe Routes will be recognizing schools that go the extra mile in helping their students walk and bike to school safely. Stay tuned for updates!