Safe Routes To School
Kids learning to move and be physically active as part of ordinary life – like going to school! – and then inspiring their parents, teachers, principals, neighbors, community to do the same is, in our opinion, a powerful means to sustainable well-living and healthfulness.
Independent, happy, confident, ready to learn youth are empowered to be guardians of their health, develop lifelong habits to move more and sit less and be leaders in their community.
Norte administers the Safe Routes To School (SRTS) initiative across the Traverse City area as well as in Northport and Elk Rapids. Our programs, projects, and events are dedicated to empowering students of all ages to be active for life.
Norte’s school-based education programs:
- The Bike Mas Project: An adventure-based after-school empowerment program for upper elementary and middle school students. (4-week program in both spring and fall)
- Estrellas: A learn-to-ride program for preschoolers using balance bikes. (4-week indoor in the gym during the winter)
- Solution: A learn-to-wrench program for upper elementary and middle school students.
Norte’s school encouragement programs and events:
- Fridays Fantástico: A weekly celebration of students walking, biking and rolling to school.
- The Great Northern Michigan Bike Train Experiment: A community-wide network of adult-led bike trains connecting schools in northern Michigan.
- Winter Walk Wednesdays: A #StepItUp inspired celebration of people – big or small – walking to work, school or just for FUN! in Traverse City.
- Park & Stroll: For those students who attend a school of choice or live too far away from their home school. Drive. Park. Walk 5 minutes to school. Easy.
- Bike2Bus: Portable bike racks at neighborhood bus stops and mapping of safe routes to these racks to encourage “biking to bus”.
- Norte Bike Library: Ensuring that awesome kids have awesome bikes to pedal to school no matter their family’s resources.
- Northern Michigan Bikes to School Day: 2nd Wednesday in May for National Bike to School Day.
- Northern Michigan Walks to School Day: 1st Wednesday in October for National Walk to School Day.
- Winter Bike To Work and School Day: 2nd Friday in February for International Winter Bike To Work and School Day
- Safe Routes To School Hero Awards: Last week of school to celebrate walk/bike to school rockstars
The benefits of walking and biking to school are many, of course:
- better concentration in class
- less traffic congestion near schools
- improved cognitive abilities
- stronger sense of community
- more exercise
- safer streets: communities with the higher walk/bike rates have lower crash rates for all travel modes
- a distraction-free time to connect with families and classmates
- less air pollutants from automobiles
- Central Grade
- Cherry Knoll
- Cherryland Middle School – Elk Rapids
- Courtade Elementary
- Eastern Elementary
- East Middle
- Grand Traverse Academy
- Holy Angels
- Immaculate Conception
- Lakeland Elementary – Elk Rapids
- Long Lake Elementary
- Northport Public School
- Old Mission Peninsula School
- Pathfinder School
- Silver Lake Elementary
- TCAPS Montessori
- Traverse Heights Elementary
- Trinity Lutheran
- West Middle
- Westwoods Elementary
- Willow Hill Elementary
- Woodland School
SRTS infrastructure projects in progress:
Passionate about kids getting themselves to YOUR school? Get involved!