November 4, 2011

International Walk To School Day

International Walk To School Day

WJXT Channel 4 covered several stories recently
related to students walking to school and the
hazards that this may present to students and
their safety.

The concerns of parents are the
ever present possibility of child abductions,
traffic hazards, children getting lost and other concerns
when children walk to school. No matter the distance there
are dangers for children even when walking in their neighborhoods.

Andrew Robinson Elementary School’s Physical Education teacher
William Jackson and the partnership with Shands Jacksonville
Pediatric Emergency Department through the efforts of
Nurse Gretta Langley with Shands Hospital worked together to bring “International Walk To School Day” to students and

Nurse Langley with the help of the Jacksonville Sheriff’s
Department, Trauma One Helicopter, the Jacksonville Suns
Mascot “Southpaw” Jacksonville Fire and Rescue, a special
visit by Dr. Donnie Horner, Education Commissioner with
the Mayor’s Office introduced the “International Walk to
School Day” to Andrew Robinson Elementary students with
exuberance and excitement.

WJXT Channel 4 is covering “International Walk to School
Day” in Jacksonville as thousands of students, parents
and communities representing more than 3,200 schools
across America celebrated the act of walking and bicycling
to school.

Started by the nonprofit Alliance for a Healthier Generation
the group is encouraging kids to walk or bike to school every
day and the benefits of walking to school:
1. Increased physical activity
2. Cuts down on air pollution and traffic congestion
3. Provides opportunities for family time together
4. Opportunities for parents to talk about their children’s
day at school.

During the assembly Coach Jackson and Nurse Langley talked to
the students about the proper way to cross the street. The
importance of walking with a group, looking right, left then
right again before crossing the street and not running into
the street. Pedestrians have laws they need to abide by, but
students have to be educated and practice to be safe.

Recent national traffic statistics on pedestrian traffic has
shown that Jacksonville has a higher rate of pedestrian injuries
and fatalities.

Children are particularly vulnerable because of their perceptions
of distance, rate of car speed, depth perception and lack of
knowledge of laws.

Parents are encouraged to reinforce walking safety and how to
safely cross streets. Reinforcing these statements where
Chief Moreland and Chief Downerof Jacksonville Fire and Rescue

At the conclusion of the assembly the Andrew Robinson Elementary
student body practiced what was taught by walking through the neighborhood. Escorted by Jacksonville Sheriffs Officer,
Officer Cummings who has made several safety presentations at ARE,
staff, teachers and parent volunteers the students excitedly and
orderly circled the neighborhood practicing new skills.

Upon conclusion of the walk students were treated to entertainment
by Southpaw, mascot of the Jacksonville Suns Baseball team, tour
of Trauma One Helicopter and JFRD fire trucks and emergency
vehicles. Students received book bags containing items to remind
them of always being safe when walking to and from school and in
their neighborhoods.

A BIG THANK YOU to The Shands Jacksonville Pediatric Emergency
Department Nurses for judging the poster contest and to Papa
John’s Pizza for providing the pizzas for the party for the
winning poster of each class.

To access pictures go to:
Official International Walk To School Web site
News 4 Jax
The Dangers of Kids Walking To School
Walking To School Dangers

By William Jackson, M.Ed.
Physical Education Teacher
Andrew Robinson Elementary School

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