Got an idea for a way to encourage more kids at your school to bike or walk to class? Maybe you and some parents or teachers want to throw a bike-to-school party or start a bike train or walking school bus. Or maybe a bike rodeo would a fun way to teach kids how to bike safely. Or maybe the school just needs more and better bike racks.
Well, the city’s Safe Routes to School program is now accepting applications for up to $1,000. The money can be used for any school in the city (K-12), whether public or private. Grants can be awarded to non-profits, PTAs or the schools themselves. For a list of recent projects, check out this PDF from the Fall 2014 round.
Applicants need to complete the form describing the project idea and get a letter of support from the school principal.
If you are interested in getting involved but don’t know how to get started, Seattle’s Walk Bike Schools group could be a good way to learn from other parents interested in helping kids get to school under their own power.
Did you know SDOT’s Safe Routes to School program provides funding to any K-12 public school, private school, non-profit, or PTA for projects that encourage kids to walk or bike to school safely? The Mini Grant program has been supporting grass-roots efforts at increasing safe biking and walking since 2009.
Take, for example, Denny International Middle School’s Bike to School program. Last year the Denny PTSA hosted donut and fruit days for kids who biked to school, handed out lights, reflectors and gloves during the winter months to keep kids safe on their bikes, kept kids hydrated with water bottles during warmer months, and made sure kids knew how to bike safely all year round by broadcasting safety information.
Last May the PTSA hosted their annual Denny-Lincoln Classic family bike ride and doubled their attendance! They handed out snacks and student-designed t-shirts to all participants and made sure to give each bike a thorough check through the A (air), B (brakes), Cs (chains). The student bike riders wound their way through the neighborhood down to Lincoln Park and were joined by the West Seattle Bike Connections group, Denny M.S. staff, and Principal Jeff Clark. The ride ended with a barbeque and prizes at the park. What a fun day!
If you have a great idea you’d like to make a reality at your school, we can help you make it happen. There are two chances every year to apply for funding: April and October. The application is simple, just tell us what you plan to do and how that will improve safety at your school and encourage more kids to bike and walk. Send in a letter of support from the school principal and your application is complete!
For more information visit: http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/ped_srts_grant.htm. For questions, contact [email protected] or 206-684-7577.