Bicycle Network has been on a Ride2School bonanza in Tasmania this month, delivering a swag of bike education sessions and Active Paths launches.
To kick off the month, Ride2School spent three days of polishing up bike skills for the students of Howrah Primary School. Read more here. This program is part of our partnership with the Schools Triathlon Challenge.
And to capitalise on the warm spring weather, we've got another bike ed day planned Wynyard Primary School on the north coast next Wednesday 29 November.
We've also been busy with our ActivePaths program. Ride2School Active Paths is a unique initiative that provides school communities with a network of routes that allow all students to actively travel at least part of the way on their journey to school, by making it easier, safer, and more enjoyable.
Together with the RACT, we've launched Active Paths across three schools this month: Sorrell School, Clarendon Vale Primary School and Punchbowl Primary School. And there's one more to go before the school term is out.
There are now 11 Tasmanian schools with Active Paths working in their communities.
Bicycle Network’s National Ride2School Manager, Jeff McPhan, said it is important to make it easier for kids to actively make their way to school and teaching them how to do so safely.
“Both bike education and Active Paths are a fantastic way to reinforce road safety messaging in a real-life environment, as opposed to this being taught this in a classroom. Students are shown how to ride and control a bike and also taught awareness by being encouraged to stop, look, listen and think when they are riding,” he said.
“Ride2School is paving the way to get young Tasmanians active on the way to school in a fun and safe way while encouraging parents to be active with their children as well.”
On average, only two out of every ten students actively travel to or from school, however schools involved in the program report much higher levels of active travel.
Riding to school also helps children get their 60 minutes of physical activity each day.
Bicycle Network Spokesperson, Anthea Hargreaves, says the positives go beyond health.
“Riding to school offers countless benefits – children can explore their independence, connect with friends and even improve their marks. Studies have also shown that those who get active on the way to school arrive more alert, focused and ready to learn,” she said.
Help us secure funding
As reported recently, Bicycle Network's Ride2School program relies on State Government funding which is not secured beyond this year.
We're working with the government on this, but we need your help to secure a long-term commitment.
If you’d like to see Ride2School expanded across Tasmania and refunded so that we can continue to do our work with school’s like Howrah Primary, please help us by emailing Premier Will Hodgman and politely asking him not to cut Ride2School funding.
For more information about Ride2School and Active Paths go to www.ride2school.com.au.