Be an Active School Travel success
To ensure your school’s success in the Active School Travel (AST) program, it’s important to promote the program and its benefits to the entire school community.
Clear and consistent communication is key when forming new transport habits and getting kids walking, cycling, scootering, car pooling and using public transport.
Creating a promotion plan at the start of the year that outlines activities and when they’ll take place will ensure there is a full year of activities planned, so your school can be an AST success. Once you have a plan, it’s a good idea to assign a representative from your AST committee to make sure each activity is ticked off.
Parents and carers play a vital role in deciding how their child will travel to and from school each day. It’s essential they understand how they, their child, the school and the local community will benefit from swapping single car journeys for active ones.
The following ideas can be added to a promotion plan to boost the profile of AST among parents, teachers and students.
- Encourage passionate parents to become active travel champions and organise group walks or bike rides.
- Add an AST article profiling an active student or their parent to every newsletter. Share your school results and demonstrate the difference they are making to your school.
- Use social media or email to remind parents before each weekly active travel day or event. Be sure to give parents enough notice to plan their child’s active travel journey. Encourage social media posts to include the hashtag #activeschooltravel
- Create an induction kit with information to show the positive outcomes of active travel, safe streets and healthy kids.
- Distribute your school’s customised active travel maps to all parents, to help them plan their year ahead.
- Publish your monthly active travel results by class on the school website to congratulate star performers.
- Include public transport timetables with parent enrolment kits. When new families join your school community, ask them ‘how will you be travelling?’ instead of ‘where will you park?’.
- Recognise teachers of outstanding active travel classes with an interclass trophy presented at assembly to recognise the class with the highest number of active travellers .
- Send a weekly email or notice board reminder promoting active travel days and reminding staff to submit ‘hands up’ survey results.
- Provide an update at staff meetings on AST events, initiatives and successes. Encourage high performing teachers to share their ideas and tips.
- Share the monthly active travel results showing the achievements of each class.
- Ensure all teachers are signed up to receive the AST e-newsletter each month.
- Involve students in your AST committee and during weekly active travel days by asking them to stamp passports, welcome students and distribute rewards.
- Display your active travel map in the classroom and encourage students to know and plot their active travel journey.
- Present the interclass trophy at regular assemblies to recognise star performers and share class results.
- Encourage students to make a poster of their favourite active travel mode. You could even make it a competition judged by all students.
- Display AST rewards on a board, in the library or other common areas.