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Safe Routes to School: Wedgwood Elementary School

What is the Wedgwood Children and Neighbors (WECAN) Project?

The WECAN project was initiated by parents and neighbors of Wedgwood Elementary School to improve walking and biking routes to the school. When environments are safer for people on foot, safety is improved for everyone, whether they are walking from home or just travelling in the passenger seat of a car. As part of a national movement called Safe Routes to School (SRTS), WECAN was instrumental in securing a Safe Routes to School (SRTS) grant from the Washington State Department of Transportation, with additional funds and program management from the Seattle Department of Transportation. SRTS programs improve the safety of walk and bike routes near school by funding construction projects, coordinating with law enforcement, and providing education services and encouragement campaigns to get more students walking and biking on those routes. 

This project will run through November 2015 and is one of four SRTS projects in Seattle Public Schools this year. Find out about the others by visiting their program pages: Greenwood Elementary, Mercer Middle, and South Shore PK-8.

Baseline Survey Results Are In!

The baseline results for the Parent and Guardian SRTS Survey have been tabulated. Check out the valuable input that parents and guardians shared through the survey here.

Circulation Plan:

Based on an observation of arrival and departure procedures conducted in November 2014, a circulation plan has been created for Wedgwood Elementary School (see circulation plan below).  Copies of the circulation plan will also be circulated to families through the school, check students first day take home backpack mail or look for the map in the PTA Newsletter.

Neighborhood Improvements:

Funding for the first phase of this project will build new sidewalk this coming summer in front of the school on NE 85th St and on the west side of 28th Ave NE between NE 85th St and NE 83rd St. In 2016, the second phase of this project will construct new sidewalk on the north side of NE 83rd St between 28th Ave NE and Ravenna Ave NE and on the west side of 28th Ave NE between NE 83rd St and NE 82nd St. A portion of sidewalk in poor condition near Ravenna Ave NE and NE 83rd St will be repaired. To keep up to date on the construction, visit the project engineering page or project fact sheet.

Upcoming Events:

Walk to School Month
October is Walk to School Month! The Seattle SRTS Partnership will organize an encouragement campaign at Wedgwood Elementary following the theme of Walktober in order to get more students walking and biking to school together. Keep an eye on the PTA newsletter and expect more information in student backpack mail as Walktober approaches.

Helmet Giveaway
Cascade Bicycle Club will be doing a free helmet giveaway at the Back to School BBQ on Sept. 8, 2015.

All-School Safety Assembly
Cascade Bicycle Club is scheduled to do an all-school bicycle and pedestrian safety assembly on Friday, Sept. 11, 2015.

Basics of Bicycling
Cascade Bicycle Club will be offering students grades 3-5 the opportunity to practice bike safety and handling skills during optional workshops taking place from Sept. 14 - Oct. 2, 2015. Cascade will provide a fleet of bikes, helmets and expert instructors to the school for 18 learning sessions during this period. Students will learn basic traffic concepts such as stopping at stop signs and how to avoid the most common accident types such as riding out of a driveway without looking. Students will also be taught the importance of wearing a helmet.

Past Events:

Bike to School Month
Cascade Bicycle Club organized a friendly Bike to School Challengeduring the month of May 2015 to encourage safe riding to school.  Students recorded the number of minutes they rode each day on a tracking calendar and earned prizes at the end of the month based on their level of activity.  Bike to School Day was celebrated nationwide on Wednesday, May 6, 2015 and Cascade representatives were at Wedgwood before school to welcome riders with healthy snacks and prizes!

Carnival & Bike Rodeo
Cascade Bicycle Club joined the all-school carnival on Saturday, May 30, 2015 and held a bike rodeo for kids to improve their bike handling skills.

Project Library:

Walk/Bike Audit Report, indicating priority recommendations from an audit conducted in November 2014.  Click here to view the Wedgwood Walk/Bike Audit Report.

To learn more or to get involved contact: the Safe Routes to School Director at info@feetfirst.org

Did you know? :

In 1969, 48% of students in the United States walked or biked to school on regular basis. Today, the national average is 13%.

What’s happening locally?

Here is a side-by-side comparison of student travel choices between Greenwood Elementary and Wedgwood Elementary, the two Safe Routes to School grant recipients in North Seattle:

What’s happening locally? Here are the Mercer Middle School baseline measurements from 2012:

Meet the Seattle Safe Routes to School Partnership!

The following people and agencies work together to provide education and encouragement activities for Safe Routes to School. Look for them in your school and community over the course of this grant and beyond!

Teresa Frizell is the Interim Safe Routes to School Program Director for Feet First. She facilitates the Seattle SRTS Partnership working to ensure that the grant makes it safer and easier for students to get school.

Shannon Koller is the Director of Education at the Cascade Bicycle Club Education Foundation. Shannon is responsible for coordinating with the school PE Specialist to deliver the bicycle education and encouragement portions of this grant.

Ruby Stacey participates in this grant as the Safe Routes to School Event Coordinator with Feet First. As an AmeriCorps volunteer, her involvement is focused on providing direct service to the school and students.

Teresa Frizell is the Interim Safe Routes to School Program Director for Feet First. She facilitates the Seattle SRTS Partnership working to ensure that the grant makes it safer and easier for students to get school.

Cathy Tuttle is the Executive Director of Seattle Neighborhood Greenways. She is responsible for leading family activities including Walk/Bike Audits, and making connections between the schools and nearby family-friendly streets.

Elizabeth Esselman is a Program Operations Specialist at Harborview Medical Center and coordinates Safe Kids Seattle South King. Elizabeth will connect with the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center to help evaluate the program’s impact

Phyllis “PJ” Porter is the Outreach Coordinator & Events Specialist at Bike Works and participates in this grant as part of Seattle Neighborhood Greenways.  Phyllis will assist with family activities connected to family-friendly streets

Brianna Mills: is part of the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center Methods Core and is working toward her PhD in Epidemiology. Brianna created the parent survey to help us evaluate and learn from local Safe Routes to School efforts.

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