Pedestrian Safety for Students

SDOT’s Safe Routes to School Program hosted a table at West Seattle Elementary School’s Multicultural Fair in June.  The purpose of this outreach event was to share information about the 2011-2012 Pedestrian Safety for Students Program with parents, students and teachers; and highlight upcoming engineering improvements and the fall 2011 in-classroom education component.

Nearly 250 attendees were able to pick up school walking maps, pedestrian safety resources, and information for parents about safe walking habits.  Students and parents who visited the table were asked to draw their route to school using color coded markers to show their travel mode – bike, bus, walk, or drive.  Attendees were also invited to join SDOT staff on a walking tour of common routes to school which will occur during the next school year.  Walking tours help identify the barriers that prevent students and parents from walking to school.  Gathering this first-hand neighborhood knowledge helps SDOT staff remove obstacles and make walking to school easier for everyone.

West Seattle Elementary students mark their route to school on the map

In the fall, SDOT will launch in-class pedestrian safety education lessons at this school.  The purpose of this program is to build relationships with at the school, raise awareness of pedestrian and driver safety issues among staff, students and parents; and work closely with students at an age when they are shaping lifelong habits.  Students learn how to be safe walkers through educational materials and a mobile simulated street intersection for hands-on practice.  Students are also provided maps and safety materials that encourage walking.

Our educational outreach work is intended to complement and enhance other efforts that are underway, including the SDOT Safe Routes to School engineering improvements which improves school walking routes and increased enforcement efforts from our partners with the Seattle Police Department.