October 7, 2011 > International Walk & Roll to School Day
International Walk & Roll to School Day
Submitted By Tess Lengyel
Students from more than 75 elementary and middle schools in Alameda County walked cycled, skateboarded and scootered to school with parents, teachers and community leaders on October 5, for International Walk & Roll to School Day. This year, a record number of mayors and county supervisors joined the festivities including Supervisors Nate Miley and Wilma Chan, Union City Mayor Mark Green, Fremont Mayor Bob Wasserman and Vice Mayor Suzanne Chan, Hayward Mayor Mike Sweeney, San Leandro Mayor Stephen Cassidy and Vice Mayor Michael Gregory. They greeted children and congratulated them for choosing a healthier way to make their way to school.
Nearly 5,000 schools across the United States and in 40 countries around the world participated in activities that promote active transportation as a way to improve health, safety and the environment.
"With a little inspiration, parents realize walking is a great way to get to school. It's such a simple thing but has so many benefits... and the kids love it," said Blanche Kim, a parent at Lum Elementary in the City of Alameda, as she encouraged families, who usually drive, to try something different on International Walk & Roll to School Day.
"International Walk and Roll to School Day is an excellent way to highlight the multiple advantages of students utilizing their own mobility to get to school," said Union City Mayor and Chair of the Alameda County Transportation Commission Mark Green. "Walking, skating or riding a bicycle is healthier, reduces greenhouse gas emissions, helps to minimize congestion and is more fun. Throughout Alameda County, the Safe Routes to Schools program is expanding and increasing numbers of students engage in a healthier start to the day."
Alameda County's Safe Routes to Schools Program is a county-wide collaboration that promotes safe walking and cycling to school. International Walk and Roll to School Day marks the start of a full, school year of Safe Routes to Schools programming to encourage walking and bicycling to school, as well as carpooling and use of public transit. As part of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission's new Climate Initiatives Program, the Safe Routes to Schools Alameda County Program, which has been extant for more than four years, has expanded to more than 80 schools across the county, reaching students from kindergarten through 12th grade.
For more information about the program, visit http://transformca.org/sr2s and www.AlamedaCTC.org.