Biking and Walking to School
"Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of riding a bike."
—John F. Kennedy
Nea encourages kids to bike or walk to and from school because it grants them greater independence, allows more flexibity in scheduling classes and other activities, keeps them active and healthy, helps decongest roadways and lessen parking challenges AND contributes to cleaner air for all of us!
However, for the maximum safety of kids and peace of mind for parents, it's especially important to know and follow the rules of the road. This biking/walking section contains a variety of tips and resources for bikers, walkers and parents to help keep everybody rolling (and walking) along smoothly! (Also see Suggested Bike Routes)
Tips for Safe Biking to School
- Wear a helmet – it’s required for riders under 18.
- Wear bright colors/reflectors so drivers can see you better.
- Stay to the right unless passing pedestrians. Shout “on your left” or ring bell when passing.
- Beware of driveways – look carefully for moving cars.
- Ride in the direction of traffic – even when on the sidewalk!
- Watch for doors opening on parked cars.
- Stop at all intersections and cross cautiously.
- Obey the rules of the road – just like cars. Stop at red lights and stop signs.
- Act predictably.
- Use a rack or basket to carry bags – avoid heavy backpacks.
- Use a bell to warn pedestrians when passing.
- Know your route – find the safest way by trying out several ways and using these suggested routes.
- Do NOT use electronic devices while biking!
Tips for Safe Walking to School
- Cross only at marked crosswalks.
- Don’t dash across streets in mid-block – look both ways for cars and bicycles.
- Be certain drivers see you – make eye contact. Do not assume.
- Be friendly – wave and thank drivers for stopping.
- Be sure all cars have stopped and see you before crossing. Be alert to cars that zip around stopped cars.
- Wear bright colors so drivers can see you better.
- Be alert – don’t listen to music, phone or text while walking.
- Hold children’s hands when crossing the street, and teach them safety rules.
Sharing the Road
Below is an illustration showing how to safely share the road with other vehicles:
KangaDo App for Parents to Connect on Carpooling, Walking, Buses, Playdates, etc.
Check out the well-designed app from KangaDo that allows parents to connect with others to coordinate carpooling, walking, school buses, biking, playdates or any other activity.
For more info or to download app, go to: KangaDo.com or email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Recording your Bike for Recovery
No one likes to think about their bike being stolen, but it does happen. To increase chances of recovering your bike if this happens, use this handy Bike Record Form to help law enforcement find and identify your bike.