News and communications
Record numbers of schools get their walking shoes onLast updated: 27 September 2012 16:37
From 1 October more Portsmouth schools than ever will be taking part in national Walk to School Month. The annual campaign encourages more kids to walk and this year they could win heaps of weather proof accessories pupils can borrow.
Over 8,000 children from 30 schools are expected to take part this year by giving the car a rest and walking in. This is around 2000 more than last year. Parents who don’t normally walk with their children to school, but live within a mile of their child’s school (a 20 minute walk) are encouraged to support the campaign. Of course, those who already walk to school can take part too!
Families living further afield, or those who drive as part of a longer journey, can take part with the new option of ‘park and stride’ drive the car part of the way and walk the rest.
Research has proven that ample parking is usually available just a three minute walk away from the school, which is perfect for park and stride. Parking further away also helps to keep the school’s road clear so children have a good view of traffic and road users can see them.
Paulsgrove Primary School is one of the participating schools and has 300 pupils getting involved. Hayley Hartley, mum of Cohen, (year two) and Tayer, (year four), said:
“It's a fantastic idea. It gets the children out in the fresh air and gives them some exercise. It's a good way to make sure they are wide awake when they arrive at school.”
Cllr Jason Fazackarley, Cabinet Member for Traffic and Transportation, said: “Walking to school has so many benefits; it helps children live a healthy lifestyle as well as reducing the congestion outside schools.
“Walk to School Month is the perfect chance to try out walking to school if you don’t already.
“If you can’t walk the whole way, park and stride has been introduced this year which is a great opportunity for more children to get involved.”
Two prizes are up for grabs for the two winning schools, the school with the most participating children and the school who travels the most miles over the month. Your child could make their school the winning one.
Winning schools will be awarded with everything they need to walk home on a rainy day; ponchos, wellington boots and umbrellas.
Walking to school can benefit children in a number of ways:
• helps reduce casualties
• helps children settle into class in the morning
• keeps you stay fit and healthy
• improves children’s road sense
• gives children the chance to talk about their day at school with their adult
Portsmouth City Council runs Child Pedestrian Training for all year one pupils around the City to help them understand and practice the green cross code. Pupils learn how to cross the road safely and the dangers of crossing by parked cars.
For more information visit:
or search 'walk to school month' on our website
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