Walking to School

Walking to school is one of the easiest ways to build physical activity into your kids’ daily routine. If you’re thinking about getting started, here are some tips for addressing the most common concerns around walking to school.

You’re concerned about safety – There are plenty of options for parents worried about safety:

  • Take turns with a neighbour walking your kids to school.
  • Arrange for your kids to walk with an older neighbour or family friend.
  • Walk your kids part way (or all the way) if your schedule is flexible.

You’re worried about traffic – Traffic is one of the things that worries parents most. The truth is that driving your kids to school can actually contribute to traffic congestion and vehicle emissions around schools, making it less safe for those who do walk.

  • Make sure your children understand the rules of the road.
  • Talk to local officials if your route to school lacks cross walks, sidewalks or snow removal.
  • Talk to your principal, School Community Council or community association about addressing traffic issues around your school. Ask about setting up a plan to ensure students have active and safe routes to school.

You live too far from the school – First, consider whether you really do live too far away. If the answer is yes, consider dropping your kids off part way and letting them walk the last few blocks. If children are bussed, ask about an alternate drop off that gives them the opportunity to walk a few blocks.
Your kids need a little motivation – For kids who aren’t in love with the idea, try these tools for making the experience more fun: