#StaySafeGetActive Walking Bubbles

Time to transform the school run

Did you know six out of 10 parents are concerned about increased levels of traffic once lockdown is lifted? We’ve created our Walking Bubbles, so you don’t have to be.

After most of us began working and learning from home in March, the recently announced return to school may feel pretty daunting, but we want to help yours go as smoothly as possible. Around 80 per cent of parents say that restricting vehicle access near schools at certain times of the day would help their family be more active, and these walking bubbles will do just that.

Walking, cycling or scooting to school are the most accessible ways to reduce congestion and pollution, while also improving the mental and physical wellbeing of pupils. As we emerge from the Covid-19 lockdown, the benefits it brings are more important than ever. That’s why we’ve launched our Walking Bubbles, to encourage everyone who can, to ‘Get Active’ on their journeys to and from school.

Our Walking Bubbles will also encourage families that have to travel by car to park at least 5-minutes away from school, creating a safer space for walking, cycling or scooting. By placing these restrictions, we also reduce the number of cars parked on pavements outside and close to the school gates, which is one of the main concerns parents have when walking to school. Reducing vehicles and creating more space will also make it much easier for families to socially distance and feel safer around school grounds.

 

Got to drive? Park and stride!

We understand that not everyone is lucky enough to live within walking, cycling or scooting distance of school – so why not give ‘park and stride’ a go?

By parking five minutes away from the school gates and walking the rest of the distance, your family can still reap the benefits of an active commute while making school a safer place for all. You could even scoot from the boot – pack your child’s scooter into the boot and let them enjoy the fun of scooting the rest of the way to school.

 

Get active, get entertained

An active commute certainly isn’t a boring one, and whether they’re travelling by bike, scooter, rollerblades or their own feet, there are plenty of ways to keep little ones entertained on the way.

Create a wildlife checklist, play I-Spy, time your journey and compete to beat it, or find new and interesting routes – the options are endless.

The walk to school also provides a great opportunity to spend time outdoors as a family, chatting about your days without the distraction of traffic, work, TV screens and computer games.

 

Our top safety tips

Of course, we want the school run to be fun, but most importantly it has to be safe. Here are our top tips to #StaySafeGetActive in your bubble…

  • Find the best and safest route to school using a journey planner
  • Practice your journey during the Summer holidays, so you’re ready to go when the Autumn term begins
  • Check that bikes, scooters and other children’s transport are safe to ride
  • If cycling or scooting, make sure everyone in your family understands how to ride safely on the road and in crowded areas
  • Always wear a properly fitting helmet when cycling or scooting. The helmet should sit low on your child’s forehead and they should be able to see the front rim when they look up
  • If you’re leaving bikes etc. at school, make sure these are safely stored and locked up, ready for the ride home

 

Government guidance

To prepare families for the return to school in the Autumn term, the Government is highlighting the importance of social distancing and has issued the following travel advice:

  • Where possible, maintain two metres distance from others
  • Where distancing is not possible, wear a face covering if you can
  • Wash and/or sanitise your hands before and after your journey to school
  • If you have no alternative to public transport keep two metres apart and follow guidance

 

Information for schools – How to create your Walking Bubble

We’ve made it as easy as possible for schools that are registered with STARS to create their Walking Bubble. Simply follow the steps below:

  • Select the ‘Login’ option from the top right corner of this page
  • Click on the ‘Perform Process’ button and select ‘Generate Walking Bubble’
  • Ensure your map is centred on your school (if not follow the on-screen instructions)
  • Select ‘Save’

Your Walking Bubble map will then be created and you will receive an email with the PDF version of your map. You will also be able to download the map from the Walking Bubble tab.

For more detailed instructions, please visit the ‘Guidance’ tab and download the ‘How to Generate Your #StaySafeGetActive Walking Bubble Map’ guide.

Please note: Access to Modeshift STARS Education and the Walking Bubble map is free for all schools in England (outside of London) but you must be registered on the system in order to generate a map. To register please select the ‘Contact/Register’ tab at the top of this page.