Park and Walk
An opportunity for more children to experience the joys and reap the benefits of walking to school, regardless of the distance of their homes from school.
What is a Park & Walk?
- A Park & Walk is when parents and caregivers drop students at a predetermined location approximately 0.5 miles from school (a 10-12-minute walk) instead of the front door of the school.
- School staff and volunteers meet students at the drop-off site and accompany them along a designated route to school.
Why start a Park & Walk?
- Research shows a positive correlation between physical activity and academic achievement.
- The walk to school helps students meet the goal of 60 minutes of daily physical activity.
- Park & Walks build community through positive exposure for the school in the neighborhood.
- Park & Walks provide leadership opportunities for older students as they help younger students on the way to school.
- Students that walk to school have increased environmental awareness and learn lifelong pedestrian safety skills.
How do I start a Park & Walk?
Below is a summary of the main steps involved in planning a Park & Walk.
- Identify a Park & Walk School Leader to meet and greet the vehicles.
- Work with the school district transportation department to identify a drop-off location and communicate with parent and caregivers who transport students.
- Determine strategies to involve students of all abilities.
- Identify school staff and adult volunteers to support the walk.
- Communicate with parents about Park & Walk purpose and schedule.
- Establish a back-up plan for weather, illness, etc.
- Share behavior expectations with students, parents and staff.
- Greet vehicles at the drop-off location and have fun!