How to Start a Walking School Bus Program

school safety patrol

School transportation looks different this year. For parents & students with concerns about traffic safety, a walking school bus program can be a great benefit to the community.

A walking school bus is a planned route on which a group of students – accompanied by an adult and/or trained AAA School Safety Patrollers – travel to school. There are assigned “stops” along the way where other students join on the way to school.

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Decide Who Will Organize & Manage the Program

This can be a group of parents who share responsibility of leading the bus different days of the week. The school may be able to help with grouping students by neighborhood.

Find Your Students!

Organize walking groups with interested families. Use social media to get the word out! Share info with the school so they can promote it too. Create a map to mark “walking school bus” stops.

walk to school

Use Your AAA School Safety Patrol!

Visit AAA.com/SafetyPatrol to order supplies or register a new School Safety Patrol. Use the resources on that page to conduct a training with your students.

Conduct a Walkability Audit

Take note of the safest route(s) possible and identify possible hazards. Provide feedback on sidewalks, crosswalks and traffic control devices before you decide on the route.

Use the Safe Routes Audit Toolkit for help.

Announce the Program in Your Community

Share the news with the school & police department.

Send a press release to local media, and share on social media networks.

Make It FUN & SAFE!

Have a group meeting with students and parents to review the rules before the program begins. Set regular check-ins to make sure students are following safety guidelines. Incorporate “theme weeks” to engage students.

Visit AAA.com/Community to learn more!

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