VDOT News - Statewide
Jenny O'Quinn 804-225-4984
Oct. 2, 2019
ANNUAL WALK TO SCHOOL DAY IS OCTOBER 2
VDOT’s Safe Routes to School program awards nearly $1 million to support safety programs and improvements
RICHMOND, Va. – Students across Virginia and the country are walking to school during the 22nd annual Walk to School Day, which takes place today, Wednesday, Oct. 2. This year, 370 Virginia schools are participating in a supporting activity, and more are expected to join throughout October.
Walk to School Day participation has grown steadily in the Commonwealth since it was first celebrated in 2009. Last year, Virginia recorded the second highest number of associated events in the country, behind California. Schools participate to encourage walking to school and safe pedestrian skills.
The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) administers the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program, and funds both infrastructure and non-infrastructure projects and programs, like Walk to School Day, to enable and encourage students to safely walk to school. This year, 18 organizations are receiving SRTS non-infrastructure grants totaling more than $999,000 to benefit students at more than 450 schools. Non-infrastructure grants can be used to fund SRTS education, encouragement, evaluation and enforcement programs, as well as local SRTS coordinators. See the list of award recipients on VDOT’s website.
Schools are encouraged to register Walk to School Day events on the national database at www.walkbiketoschool.org. For additional information, please visit the following resources:
- VDOT Safe Routes to School Program: virginiadot.org/saferoutes
- Walk and Bike to School Day: walkbiketoschool.org
- Plan a Walk To School Day activity:http://www.walkbiketoschool.org/plan/event-ideas/
About Safe Routes to School
- Since 2007, VDOT has awarded over $24 million in funding to more than 600 schools in Virginia for Safe Routes to School activities.
- Walk to School Day was established in the U.S. in 1997 by the Partnership for a Walkable America. Canada and Great Britain already had walk to school programs in place. In 2000, these three countries joined together to create International Walk to School Day.
- Walk to School Day began as a simple idea – children and parents, school and local officials walking to school together on a designated day. It is an energizing event, reminding everyone of the simple joy of walking to school, the health benefits of regular daily activity and the need for safe places to walk and bike. Schools focus on health, safety, physical activity and concern for the environment.
Information in VDOT news releases was accurate at the time the release was published. For the most current information about projects or programs, please visit the project or program Web pages. You may find those by searching by keyword in the search Virginia DOT box above.