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Schools invited to power up their active travel for 2016

13 August, 2015

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk is encouraging school communities to pull on their running shoes and wheel out their bikes, in preparation for the 2016 Active School Travel program.

Cr Quirk has this week opened nominations for the program, which sees thousands of students, teachers, parents and friends take an active choice for their trip to school.

“Our award-winning program started in 2004 and since then, more than 88,000 students from 169 schools have benefited from a more active and healthy lifestyle, safer streets, reduced traffic congestion and a cleaner and greener community,” Cr Quirk said

“Participating schools see great benefits using the program’s incentives to encourage and motivate students to walk, cycle, scooter, carpool or take public transport to and from school.

“This year 50 schools are involved in the Active School Travel program, including 17 new schools, and we’re expecting to see great results!”

Council’s three-year Active School Travel program provides a range of free resources and tools to enable families to leave the car at home and actively travel to and from school, with a focus on helping to improve kids’ road safety skills, boost exercise and attention levels, and make school streets safer.

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said research shows that children who are physically active on the way to school are more alert and attentive in class, and arrive at school ready to learn,” Cr Quirk said.

“Last year 12 new schools entered the program and, by the end of the year, 18 per cent of single-family car trips to and from these schools had been swapped for an active and healthy transport mode.

“Results were positive across the board – with increases in walking, carpooling and scooter trips – and more than three quarters of parents surveyed said the program had improved their child’s road safety awareness.”

A dedicated Council Active School Travel officer works closely with each school to tailor the program specifically to their needs, including weekly active travel days, personalised active travel maps with identified Park & Stride routes, free bike and scooter skills training, Active School Travel student ‘passports’ and rewards, plus whole-school assembly performances and road safety education.

Cr Quirk said all primary schools within the Brisbane City Council area can nominate for the 2016 round of the Active School Travel program until 18 September.

“Places are limited, so nominate early to avoid missing out on the 2016 intake,” he said.

For more information or to nominate for the Active School Travel Program, visit www.brisbane.qld.gov.au/schools or phone Council on (07) 3403 8888.

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