Safe walking and bicycling to school and other neighborhood destinations is one benefit of active communities, places where people of all ages and abilities can get to where they want to go without relying only on a car. In active communities, people feel safe to walk, want to bicycle, and have destinations within short distances.
Active communities offer access to a public transportation network that can take residents to locations beyond easy walking or biking distance. They have an active transportation infrastructure that includes sidewalks, bicycle lanes or paths, and safe street crossings.
The resources listed to the right are intended to help local city, county and school leaders access tools and information they can use to support safe walking and biking options for students and other residents.
In tough economic times expectations remain high for cities and counties to provide quality public services and facilities, though resources to fund desired projects are scarce. One strategy for overcoming limited resources is for cities and counties to combine forces with other agencies and organizations to leverage expertise, staff time and funding.
This concise 14-page resource provides an overview of the connection between Safe Routes to School (SRTS) programs and environmental health, a formula for estimating the environmental health impact of a program’s activities and examples of how real-life SRTS programs have estimated their environmental health impact.
Published by NLC’s Institute for Youth, Education, and Families and the American Association of School Administrators (AASA), the report on “Community Wellness: Comprehensive City-School Strategies to Reduce Childhood Obesity” focuses on lessons learned by cities that participated in a 2007-08 technical assistance project.
During the summer and fall of 2008 the Institute for Local Government’s Healthy Neighborhoods Program, in Collaboration with Cities Counties and Schools Partnership, organized a series of three online “Web Dialogues” for city, county, and school officials and staff members to connect and share information related to planning for better resident health. The documents below contain the content of three ten day online dialogues and the resources that were posted by our volunteer panelists and participants.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) hosts a web-based resource for law enforcement officers. The Safe Routes to School for Law Enforcement website provides tips, tools and other materials to help law enforcement officers get involved in Safe Routes to School (SRTS), a national effort to enable and encourage children to safely walk and bike to school.