A new report, Creating Healthier Generations: A Look at 10 Years of the Federal Safe Routes to School Program, released by the National Center for Safe Routes to School examines the accomplishments of the Federal Safe Routes to School Program over the past decade.
Since the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program was established by Congress in 2005, nearly 18,000 schools teaching kindergarten through eighth grades in all fifty states and the District of Columbia have been a part of SRTS. The program has reached more than 6.8 million students nationwide, with underserved schools well represented, and has demonstrated safe transportation and health benefits of active travel for these students.
This report highlights the program’s rich data and features stories of SRTS funded projects that show the accomplishments and change the program has had on communities nationwide. Data show the program improved safety and increased the number of students walking and biking to school. For example, in Miami-Dade County, SRTS is part of a comprehensive program that measured a 63 percent reduction in child pedestrian injuries, while a program at Heatherwood Elementary in Boulder, Colorado, reported a dramatic increase in walking and bicycling to school and introduced children with autism to riding tandem bikes. Not only has SRTS improved safety and active transportation, the program has also found broader benefits such as increased connectivity within communities, reduced transportation costs, enhanced community life, and more.
This report also examines how communities continue to find ways to include safe walking and bicycling infrastructure into transportation planning. The success of this program is due in large part to the work of the State Coordinators. Their presence has been a major strength in the implementation of SRTS and enabled the program to have the detail of data contained in this report. View the full report here.