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Saturday, October 06, 2007

Walking Schools Buses - One School's Plan

This article is from the Queen Anne News. From the article:

"Lawton Walking School Buses, a program initiated this past spring, start up again with the resumption of school and will be "running" every Walking Wednesday and Fuel Free Friday throughout the school year.

The idea is that Lawton Elementary School families should consider this safe and health-enhancing alternative to driving to school. On each of the five routes (see below), students start out with a trained safety volunteer in the lead. All buses depart at 8:30 a.m., with an intermediate pickup point along the way."

Sounds like a good starting point.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm interested about how this is funded. My child's elementary school made a huge deal about bus count week, with the PTA encouraging even non-riders to get in the bus that week to up the counts for state funding.

Is this program funded by the state. I think it would be great if it were.

Anonymous said...

There is federal money available through Safe Routes to Schools; however, I don't know how those funds are distributed - i.e. to individual schools vs. to regional coordinators. You could contact Feet First (http://www.feetfirst.info/), the Seattle pedestrian organization that has spearheaded walking school bus programs in several SW Seattle and South Seattle schools.

There's also a strong walking school bus program at Laurelhurst, with a volunteer mom who does presentations on how the program is sustained. Feet First could connect people to her.

I've never heard about bus counts being tied to school funding - what is that?

Anonymous said...

Sorry, not school funding, just transportation funding. The way it was described to me, about 60% of transportation costs are covered by the state. This is determined by the survey week. Therefore the more kids who ride the bus that week, the more money the district gets for bussing costs from the state. This frees up district money for other programs.

Anonymous said...

There is no funding for walking school buses at Lawton. Just a few parent volunteers, some safety vests bought by the PTA and lots of encouragement.