Creating a Safe Routes to School program can make your child’s commute to school safer. The routes are designed to be pedestrian and bicycle-friendly for children who walk or ride to school. Designed to protect children and increase the number of children who walk or bike, the community itself develops a Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program. If you want to create a program in your own NE Philly neighborhood, here are some tips to help you get started.
Get a Group Together
The first step in creating an SRTS program is to get a group of concerned citizens together who are interested in increasing the number of students who walk or bike to school and who want to improve child safety. Great places to get the word out include schools, PTA get-togethers, playgroups and other parent meetings. Talk to other parents about the importance of an SRTS program, how it can benefit the community and share examples of successful SRTS programs. You also can form an SRTS coalition to help get people involved.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, below are some of the people your SRTS program should involve.
- School staff
- City or county staff
- Elected officials
- Community groups
- Law enforcement
- Crossing guards
You can hold a meeting to kick off your plan and introduce a plan to interested members of the community.
Formulate a Plan
After you gathered the support and excitement to kick off an SRTS program, it’s time to formulate a real plan. Look for obstacles that might prevent children from walking to school or that might make walking more dangerous. Then start thinking of solutions.
SafeRoutesInfo.org suggests that an SRTS plan include encouragement, enforcement, education and engineering strategies. What’s more, the group should develop a timeline for each strategy and consider funding for strategies. You may be able to receive funding for your SRTS through federal programs, philanthropic organizations, individual contributions, county and city funds, state SRTS programs, and more.
A Safe Routes to School Program can improve the safety of everyone and have a positive effect on the community. While putting an SRTS program into action takes a lot of work and commitment, an SRTS program is a valuable contribution to the neighborhood.
Contact an Accident Attorney if Your Child Is in an Accident
Creating a Safe Routes to School Program can reduce the risk of children who walk or bike to school being involved in an accident with a motor vehicle. But if your child suffers injuries in a traffic accident, the attorneys at Cordisco & Saile LLC can help. You can reach our offices now at 215-642-2335 or via our contact form.