Community and municipal partners make "walking only" a possibility for newly built school
The Halton District School Board will open one of its newest schools, P.L. Robertson Public School in Milton, on January 4, 2010 as a “walking-only” school. As the newly-built school gets ready to receive students, the school board and community partners have been busy ensuring the infrastructure and supports are in place for students to use active transportation to get to and from school.
In June 2009, Halton District School Board trustees approved a recommendation allowing the encouragement and organization of active transport to school. In an attempt to decrease vehicle traffic at schools, the trustees unanimously voted to implement the Active and Safe Routes to School (ASRTS) program in 25 schools. ASRTS engages young students in active transportation such as walking, biking, and in-line skating as a healthy, sustainable way to get back and forth to school.
“P.L. Robertson Public School is one of the schools in our ASRTS project,” says Jennifer Jenkins, ASRTS Project Manager for the Halton District School Board. “What’s great about P.L. Robertson is 98% of the students live within walking distance of the school, making active transportation the easy choice for getting to school”.
School administrators are enthusiastic about making the school as car free as possible.
“We need to have students arrive by foot, bike or any other form of active transportation all year long,” says Joyce Jermyn, Vice-principal at P.L. Robertson Public School. “This will create a green, healthy environment for the student body. To encourage an active transport culture, we will be conducting walking school buses, promotional events and incentive programs.”
As P.L. Robertson embarks on this project, it asks the surrounding community to be aware of student walkers and to clear sidewalks of any snow so the journey to school is easy, safe and desirable.
“For this to be a success”, adds Jermyn, “we need the parent community to help by not driving their children to school, by driving carefully when heading to work and by clearing their sidewalks.”
For additional information, contact:
Jennifer Jenkins, Active & Safe Routes to School Project Manager (ext 2228)
Marnie Denton, Manager, Communication Services (ext 2227)
Halton District School Board
(905) 335-3663, (905) 842-3014, (905) 878-8451