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Mini-Grants are now available for Safe Routes to School projects

srts_studentpatrolThe Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is accepting applications for mini-grants of up to $1,000 to fund projects that educate students about pedestrian and bicycle safety, and encourage walking and biking to school. Private and public schools, PTAs and other school-related nonprofit groups may apply. The activities must support the overall goal of educating about safety and encouraging more walking and bicycling to school.

If you’re wondering what qualifies for funding, past examples may inspire you. Mini-grants have helped schools start student safety patrols, attentive-driving programs, anti-idling campaigns, as well as bike safety education programs. Last year, Loyal Heights Elementary created an eight-week urban cycling club to teach fourth and fifth grade students bike safety and practice bicycling skills on neighborhood streets. McDonald Elementary School purchased safety supplies, including safety vests and flags, for their walking school buses. Mercer Middle School brought an “Undriver Licensing Station” to school for students who choose to walk and bike to school.

In previous years, schools have used their mini-grants to purchase safety patrol equipment and start a new student safety patrol program; to make traffic circulation changes on school property that increased safety for students walking and biking to school; and to start a peer-education bicycle safety program.

Mini-grant funds can even support creative classroom activities that explore the benefits of walking and biking to school. Ballard High School students used a mini- grant to produce a documentary film about the Seattle Bicycle Music Festival.

 If you have an idea for a safety education program, please  visit our website for more information on how to apply for a Mini Grant,  In addition to the application, a letter of support from the school principal must be e-mailed or mailed by the application due date. For questions, contact Ashley Harris at Completed applications are due by the close of business October 25, 2013 and recipients will be announced by December 6, 2013.