Pupils from schools across Edinburgh are developing creative ideas to help motivate more families to walk to school.
As part of an initiative to create safer school streets and healthier pupils, more than 40 of Edinburgh’s junior road safety officers (JRSOs) attended an education event on 18 April.
Organised by Living Streets Scotland in partnership with the City of Edinburgh Council, the event comprised a series of workshops including Rap Writing, Street Games, WOW Motivator and Play Street Trumps – all designed to encourage active travel.
The JRSOs are now tasked with sharing what they learnt with other pupils at their schools.
The schools that attended the event are part of the City of Edinburgh Council’s School Street initiative, under which streets around schools are closed during peak times in a bid to combat congestion and encourage active travel.
All of the schools also take part in WOW, Living Streets’ year-round walk to school challenge. The charity is also calling on parents/carers to pledge to walk their child to school as part of Walk to School Week 2018 (21–25 May).
Rebecca Simpson, Living Streets Scotland, said: “We’re thrilled to be working with the City of Edinburgh Council to highlight the importance of making the journey to school as safe as possible (and) encourage children to walk more.
“Living Streets Scotland will be supporting the City of Edinburgh Council to grow the WOW programme in Edinburgh over the next academic year. Hopefully we’ll see an increase in the number of children walking to school as a result.
“2018 is the ‘Year of the Young Person’ so it is only right that we enable children to play a lead role in supporting this goal!”
Cllr Lesley Macinnes, Edinburgh’s transport and environment convener, said: “Tackling congestion at the school gates and keeping children safe around schools are major priorities for our road safety team.
“Our School Streets programme is all about creating as safe and relaxed an atmosphere around schools as we can by discouraging parents from driving right up to the school gates at pick-up and drop-off.
“We’re delighted to work in partnership with Living Streets to promote awareness and encourage more families to walk, scoot and cycle to school.”