The Safe Routes to Schools Program improves the quality of life for entire school communities through education, encouragement and infrastructure improvements. Presented in partnership with the Transportation Authority of Marin, Safe Routes teaches cycling skills and promotes healthy lifestyles, while championing green transportation. Marin County pioneered the national Safe Routes to Schools program that has spread across the U.S. and is in all 50 states today.
History of the Marin County Program
In 2000, MCBC created the pilot Safe Routes to Schools (SR2S) program in Marin County as one of two national pilot programs, through a combination of grants from the Marin Community Foundation, The California Department of Health and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Starting with nine schools, we added five more in the first year. By the end of the first two years we increased the number of students traveling to school by walking and biking from 21% to 38%.
The voters of Marin passed a transportation sales tax in 2004 that included 11% funding for Safe Routes to Schools including crossing guards and infrastructure. The program is now under the auspices of the Transportation Authority of Marin, and the Marin County Bicycle Coalition continues to run the day-to-day activities through a contractual agreement.
Today, more than 50 schools now participate in the program within Marin County, including preschools, almost every elementary school, middle schools and even high schools. The program has expanded to include a diverse offering of classes and opportunities to encourage more walking, biking, carpooling and transit use in the journey to and from school.
Training and Consulting
MCBC offers trainings that will fit the needs of your community. We can train your coordinators or the whole community, whether you are a school district, city, or advocacy group. Whether you are a start up program or want to develop a plan to sustain your mature program, we can help you to find the strategies that will work for your community.
Trainings can include:
- Walk Audits
- Task Force development
- Strategic Plan development
- Train the Trainers education programs
- Development of encouragement strategies and materials
- Policy and curriculum development
- Long range sustainability planning
If you would like more information, please contact the Safe Routes to Schools team.