We had the pleasure yesterday to participate in National Bike To School Day with about 100 faculty, students, and administrators from Westhaven Elementary School located on Hodge Road in Whitehaven. We were joined by bike patrol officers Johnson and Jefferson from the Raines Police Precinct and led students on a 0.7 mile ride to start the school day.
After the bike ride, children ate breakfast during a bike safety talk from Officer Johnson. Each child received bike safety information to take home as well as a rear blinking light in case they wind up riding after dark. Additionally, the school was provided new bike helmets to giveaway to students before the end of the school year.
We’ll be working with Coach K next year as we works to establish a bike to school day each week at Westhaven Elementary School and an annual bike safety curriculum for students to take during physical education courses.
Check out the great photos below that document our time together.
Bike to School Day is part of the celebration of National Bike Month. Almost 1,300 schools in 50 states and the District of Columbia registered events for 2013.
In 1969, 48 percent of students in grades K through eight (ages 5 through 14) walked or bicycled to school. In 2009, only 13 percent of students in grades K through eight walked or bicycled to school.
In 1969, 89 percent of students in grades K through eight who lived within one mile of school usually walked or bicycled to school. In 2009, only 35 percent students in grades K through eight students who lived within a mile of school usually walked or bicycled to school even once a week.
This is an opportunity lost. Walking or bicycling to school gives children time for physical activity and a sense of responsibility and independence; it also creates an opportunity to be outdoors and provides time to connect with parents, friends and neighbors.