As an organizer of a walking school bus at Lyndale Community School five years ago, I have seen firsthand that the Safe Routes to School Program works.
Every day I see the benefits of walking to school. It promotes and supports a healthy lifestyle; kids who walk to school are ready to focus and concentrate once they get there; it teaches kids a sense of responsibility; it gets parents more engaged in the school and the daily lives of their children.
But the benefits go beyond kids and schools. Walking is a sign of a safe and vibrant neighborhood. Over and over again I have seen people in their yards, and those passing by in a car, light up with a smile when they see a group of kids walking to school.
Walking to school is also contagious in that it creates a culture of healthy change. On one of the walking routes, we started with six kids—today we have as many as 30. The Safe Routes to School Program works. The Minnesota Legislature should do everything in its power to support it.
Lyndale Community School Parent/Walking Bus Leader