Safe Routes to School (SRTS) is a movement to create safe, convenient, and fun opportunities for children to walk, bicycle, and use other forms of active transportation to go to and from school. SRTS offers educational events, student prizes, and safety projects in collaboration with school staff, volunteers, police departments, public health staff, and city traffic managers.
Thirty years ago, 60% of children living within a 2-mile radius of a school walked or bicycled to school. Today, that number has dropped to less than 15%. Roughly 25% commute by school bus, and well over half are driven to or from school in private vehicles. Approximately 20% of children in Napa County are overweight or obese, according to 2015 data. These statistics point to a rise in preventable childhood diseases, worsening air quality and congestion around schools, and missed opportunities for children to grow into self reliant, independent adults.
Safe Routes to School Programs are intended to reverse these trends by funding projects that improve safety and efforts that promote walking, bicycling, and carpooling within a collaborative community framework. It is through local champions working with a coalition of parents, schools, professionals in transportation, engineering, health, and law enforcement, that the most sustainable projects are expected to emerge.
Napa County Office of Education is the recipient of the SRTS grant, and implements all SRTS programs throughout Napa County.
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We offer many different programs and activities depending on how involved your school wants to be. All of the following are FREE to any school in Napa County:
We are looking for a parent or group of parents interested in working with us to spearhead this movement in our community. None of these events are possible without the help of volunteers and the schools. As a parent this is a great way to get involved with your child’s school and help make a difference in your community. Time requirement is minimal, very little work is required. All materials and resources will be provided to you for each event, along with the training.
Potential Volunteer Roles
School Safety Liaison- Main contact for SRTS volunteer coordinator and school/community.
As of July 2017 the Safe Routes to School grant funding will be up. We are currently in the process of seeking and applying for other funding, though nothing is a guarantee. We need the assistance of the community members now more than ever to help keep this program running. First the number one way that YOU could help assist our program is by donating your time, and help run an event. If you are unable to donate time and feel compelled to help in-kind or money donations are just as valuable.
We have many dedicated volunteers that offer a significant amount of their time to help ensure our program runs smoothly. This program would be impossible without the help of volunteers, and we must be sure to retain our veterans as well as gain new volunteers. We are asking for any type of donation that could be used in order to show our appreciation for our hardworking volunteers, as well as provide incentives for participants. This could be anything from money to any type of in-kind donation, gift cards, goodies, etc.
Make your tax-deductible donation today!
International Walk to School Day is a global event that involves communities from more than 40 countries walking and biking to school on the same day. It began in 1997 as a one-day event. Over time, this event has become part of a movement for year-round safe routes to school and a celebration each October. Today, thousands of schools across America – from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico – participate every October.
The first-ever National Bike to School Day took place on May 9, 2012, in coordination with the League of American Bicyclists’ National Bike Month. Almost 1,000 local events in 49 states and the District of Columbia joined together to encourage children to safely bicycle or walk to school. The event builds on the popularity of Walk to School Day, which is celebrated worldwide each October. Many communities and schools have been holding spring walk and bicycle to school events for years. National Bike to School Day provides an opportunity for schools across the country to join together to celebrate and to build off of the energy of National Bike Month every May.
“Walk & Roll Wednesdays” is a new initiative aimed at establishing healthy and active lifestyles among all Napa County children. Ideally, we would like two champions (school staff, parents, or community volunteers) at each school site to promote walking, biking, carpooling, or taking the bus to school on the first Wednesday of every month. A welcome table would be set up to greet students who used any of the previously mentioned modes of transportation to get to school. SRTS will provide you with resources and incentives to encourage kids to participate!
Your activity doesn’t have to be limited to these two days! Fire Up Your Feet encourages families, students, and schools to work together and create active lifestyles which inspire all children to be healthy and physically active. Centered around the school day, this website provides a full range of age-appropriate resources, activity trackers, and educational materials to encourage physical activity to, from, and at school.
The Napa County Office of Education has a strong partnership with the Napa Valley Vine Trail, which will eventually be a 47 mile continuous Class I bike trail from Vallejo to Calistoga. The Vine Trail Outdoor Classroom Program provides lesson plans for K-8 teachers to bring their classroom to the Vine Trail for some sensory learning.
Because of our partnership with Napa County Bicycle Coalition we are now able to offer off-campus rides as part of the bicycle safety course curriculum. Students are accompanied by Cycling Instructors and volunteers on a pre-determined route that allows them to safely demonstrate their acquired cycling skills.
Whether you commute by car, bike, or bus, the Solano-Napa Commuter Info can help you find the easiest way for you to get around town with the least amount of carbon emissions. They can help you navigate your way through the public transit system, organize a vanpool, and create rideshare matches. You can even create your own route with the 511 Bike Mapper!
Being a “Roll Model” means:
Aly Hite, Program Coordinator
Trinity Talbott, Program Coordinator
Bridget Mancini, Volunteer Services – Americorps Member
Jeannie Puhger, Program Manager