• This month’s Bike and Roll to School Day success rests on Safe Routes to School (SRTS) foundation set a decade ago.
  • Reach out now to local school board members and ask them to support SRTS funding and hiring of full-time SRTS program coordinator. 
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Fairfax County SRTS History

FABB wants to give a big shout out of “Well Done!” to everyone who participated in Bike and Roll to School Day earlier this month. Fairfax County Public Schools had 48 registered events, so the county is slowly recovering from the impact of the pandemic on schools. As recently as 2017, nearly 80 county schools out of 141 elementary and 23 middle schools participated in this annual event.

The Safe Routes to School Program helped set the foundation for such successful bike, walk, and roll events. We greatly appreciate the work of the School Board and the Facilities and Transportation staffs in supporting SRTS and for encouraging more kids to walk and bike to school.

FABB has always felt that it is critical that kids are taught how to safely walk and bike along our streets. But, we can’t advocate in good faith to get more kids on bikes unless we ensure they receive safety education.

So much of the county’s progress in encouraging and educating young bike riders, however, has been, to paraphrase, “two pedals forward and one pedal back.” For example, we recently learned that the traveling fleet of bikes that the county has used for the last 8 years to reach a wide range of schools with bike safety training will be moving to two schools permanently. Schools without bikes now will have to contact one of the 31 schools that have a set of bikes to borrow for their own on-bike safety education classes.

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Fairfax County needs to do more and better. Unfortunately, the fate of SRTS is still undetermined as the grant that kept the program alive has ended.

FABB is again asking everyone to reach out to your local school board member and ask them to support funding for the SRTS program and the hiring of a full-time SRTS program coordinator.

Find links to your supervisor and school board members at https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/myneighborhood/.

Don’t wait! Speak Up! for Safe Routes to School.

 

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