Safe Routes to School
National Bike to School Day
What is National Bike to School Day? The first-ever National Bike to School Day took place on May 9, 2012, in coordination with the League of American Bicyclists’ National Bike Month. Since then, Bike to School Day has grown from nearly 1,000 local events the first year to 2,678 local events in 2016.
When is National Bike to School Day? Bike to School Day is celebrated on the Wednesday of the first full week in May. The dates for the coming years are:
- Bike to School Day 2017 - May 10
- Bike to School Day 2018 - May 9
- Bike to School Day 2019 - May 8
Why should my school participate? Participating in Bike to School Day encourages active transportation to school, teaches bicycle safety skills, and most importantly, it’s fun for everyone! Participation can occur on many levels from celebrating the students who already bike to school to planning a division-wide bike rodeo. Need ideas? Get started by checking out the Bike to School Day resources below.
Be sure to register your event on www.walkbiketoschool.org to be counted toward the national total for 2017. In addition, Virginia schools that register by May 31, 2017 will receive a Virginia Safe Routes to School banner decal!
Virginia started tracking the number of BTSD events held each year in 2012 with 26 events. Since then, participation has grown each year, with 218 schools participating in 2016. This year, with your help, we hope to beat 250 events.
What if students can't bike to school? If students live too far or roadway conditions make it unsafe to bike to school, consider organizing a Park-and-Ride location where they can meet up with their classmates at a designated spot nearby and ride as a group from there. Schools may also want to consider hosting a bike rodeo on school grounds where all students are invited to bring their bikes and helmets to practice safe bicycling skills.
Bike to School Day Tip Sheets and Guides
How to Plan a Walk or Bike to School Event in 7 Days – Do you only have a week or two to pull off a walk/bike event? Don’t panic! You can plan an event in as little time as a week. Look over this planning guide to organize your steps over the course of seven days.
Conduct a Bike Audit – Before promoting your bike to school day event, it can be helpful to test the biking routes first. Think about bringing community stakeholders along as you determine the bikability of the area. Whether the bike audit is conducted by a school champion, a bike train leader, or a community group, this Learn it. Do it. Live it. tip sheet can help make the most of your audit.
Event Ideas – Walk or bike to school events can be as simple as encouraging kids to walk or bike on a particular day. This Learn it. Do it. Live it. tip sheet describes several great ideas other local SRTS programs have used successfully.
First-time Tips for Planning a SRTS Event – This tip sheet has great advice from seasoned event organizers. If this if your first event (or you’re looking for ways to plan a smooth event), review this short tip sheet.
Bike to School Day Flyers, Posters and Stickers
Check out these VDOT SRTS customizable flyers, posters, and stickers to help spread the word about Bike to School Day.
Celebrate Bike to School Day by giving out these BTSD stickers to students who bike or walk to school at you school’s event! Stickers can be printed in black and white as well. If you'd like to use colored label paper for the stickers, use this template (compatible with Avery Label # 5294).
|Inform parents and community members about Bike to School Day by handing out these BTSD flyers to send home with students. The flyers are customizable to your school, have space to share your school’s BTSD plans, contact information and it includes bicycle safety tips. They can also be printed in black and white as well.|
|Advertise your school’s Bike to School Day by hanging up this BTSD poster at your school or at local events. The poster is customizable to your school, with space to include the date and details of the event as well as contact information. It also can be printed in black and white.|
|Hang this BTSD Banner up during your school’s Bike to School Day. The banner is 2.5 x 4 feet and the date can be customized for your school’s event.|
You can also use fliers designed by the National Center for Safe Routes to School.
|Use this information flyer to share the date, time, and other pertinent details of your school’s Bike to School Day with parents and the community.|
|This Bike to School Day Why Ride flyer can help spread the word about your school’s Bike to School Day and can share the benefits of Bike to School Day.|
- WalkBiketoSchool.Org – Register your school’s Bike to School Day event, map a biking route, see what other schools are doing and get event ideas at The National Center’s Bike to School Day Website.
- Bicycle Safety for Children and Parents – These tip sheets, developed by the National Center for Safe Routes to School, help children and their parents do bike and helmet checks as well as provide reminders for staying safe while riding a bike.
- ABC Quick Check - An ABC Quick Check, created by the League of American Bicyclists, teaches students how to check the Air, Brakes, and Chain before going on a bike ride
- Bike Trains – The National Center for Safe Routes to School has put together some great resources for organizing bike trains. Follow this link to learn the ins-and-outs of organizing a Bike Train.
- Be a Roll Model! – Being a Roll Model means knowing how to safely ride a bike in all types of environments. The National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA) has resource guides for adults and children on how to be a better Roll Model.
- Promote Bike Safety – NHTSA has put together this list of ideas to help promote bicycle safety.