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Safe Routes to Schools Programs

The Transportation Authority of Marin administers Safe Routes to School (SR2S) programs aimed at promoting walking, bicycling, taking transit or carpooling to school; planning safer walking and bicycling routes to schools; funding the construction of safe pathways to school; and providing crossing guards at major intersections.

About Us
Safe Routes to Schools (SR2S) is a program of the Transportation Authority of Marin designed to reduce local congestion around schools by increasing the number of children walking and biking to school. A SR2S program integrates health, fitness, traffic relief, environmental awareness and safety under one program. It is an opportunity for parents to work closely with their children's school, the community and the local Marin government to create a healthy lifestyle for children and a safer and cleaner environment for everyone. The program is offered to all schools in Marin County, California.   Take a look at the Safe Routes to School Newsletters.  The program has four components:

Education and Encouragement The SR2S Education and Encouragement program offers events, contests and promotional materials to encourage children (and parents) to walk and bicycle.  In addition, the program provides classroom lessons to teach children the necessary skills to navigate through busy streets and to persuade them to be active participants in the program.

Crossing Guard program The Crossing Guard program provides trained crossing guards at key intersections throughout Marin County. Use of crossing guards can reduce the reluctance parents may have in allowing their children to walk or bicycle to school. Crossing guard locations are prioritized based upon proven criteria.

Planning The SR2S program assists schools and communities in planning safer walking and bicycling routes to and from school. This element of the program is focused on working with stakeholders to develop engineering and enforcement actions needed for safer access to schools.  You can find out more information on SR2S Task Forces and SR2S School Teams.

Safe Pathways Safe Pathways is the capital improvement element of the SR2S program. This element of the program provides funding for the engineering, environmental clearance, and construction of pathway and sidewalk improvements, including safety improvements at street crossings.

Why Safe Routes is Important

Did you walk or bike to school when you were young? Thirty years ago over 66% of all children walked to school (US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). Walking or biking to school gives children a taste of freedom and responsibility, allows them to enjoy the fresh air and the opportunity to get to know their neighborhood, while arriving at school alert, refreshed and ready to start their day. Yet most American children are denied this experience --today, only 13% of America's children walk or bike to school (US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

According to local studies, 21-27% of morning traffic is attributed to parents driving their children to school (Marin County Congestion Management Agency). This has caused increased traffic congestion around schools, prompting even more parents to drive their kids. The consequences to our children, to their health and to the health of the community are extensive.

A successful Safe Routes to Schools program improves the health and safety of pupils and the surrounding neighborhood. Students increase their physical activity, potentially improving their alertness and behavior. California studies have shown that children who are physically active perform better academically (California Department of Education, December 2002)

Cities with existing programs have experienced reduced traffic congestion, reduced collision in and around schools, and decreased speed in residential neighborhoods. Children learn valuable traffic safety skills and responsibility and more people of all ages are able to walk and bike in the neighborhood as a result of improved access.

MCBC's Safe Routes to Schools Program Website

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Last updated: 1/10/2013 3:38:11 PM