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CITY OF TIGARD

Safe Routes to School

Back to School Season: Plan Ahead
The start of the school year marks the best time to set good habits that will continue the rest of the year. This includes deciding how your child will get to and from school. Before summer ends, practice finding a safe walk or bike route to school or your bus stop. Our suggested walking and biking route maps help you find the route to school that works for you.

Live too far away? Consider driving part of the way and then walking or biking the rest. Remember to review traffic safety procedures with your children before the first day back to school.

We all know traffic in and around schools can be chaotic at arrival and dismissal times. Roads and school parking lots cannot handle the volumes of cars at these peak periods. Walking, biking or taking the bus is often a great alternative. These options provide great ways to connect with your child each day and get some exercise. They also reduce traffic congestion and increase safety around schools. 

Walk and Bike to School Day is Wednesday, Oct. 4. Walk or ride your bike to school on this day and receive a prize from one of our enthusiastic volunteers. Interested in volunteering for Safe Routes to School? We need you. Volunteer from one to 10 or more hours a month—it is up to you!

Fun ways to start walking and biking to school:

  • Start a walking school bus or bike train
  • Organize events like walk and bike to school day
  • Start a frequent walker/biker punch card program at your school
  • Help with walking and biking planning to improve safety at your school
  • Share your ideas with us. Safe Routes to School can provide printing and design support, event materials and promotion. We are here to help connect your city with your school. 

About Safe Routes to School

Tigard has initiated a Safe Routes to School program for the Tigard-Tualatin School District elementary and middle schools in the community. Walkable neighborhoods are strong neighborhoods. Driving to the neighborhood school is sometimes the only option. But driving to school creates congestion, carbon emissions and parking challenges, and keeps children from exercising their bodies and minds. SRTS is a framework for parents to join with teachers, school administrators and city officials to encourage active transportation to and from school.
 

The city was awarded a $150,000 Regional Travel Options grant through Metro to fund a full time Safe Routes to School Coordinator for two years. The coordinator is working with the seven elementary and two middle schools in Tigard. The goal is to initiate Safe Routes to School programs at the schools where there is not already some kind of presence; and to broaden and deepen the programming at the three elementary schools already involved in the initiative and sustain the program by creating systems that can be easily replicated and delivered.

The Five E’s provide the foundation of our Safe Routes to School initiatives, ensuring that the safety, active transportation and community aspects of the program are promoted.

Education | Encouragement | Enforcement | Engineering | Evaluation

There are a number of benefits of the Safe Routes to School Program.
Beneficios de Rutas Seguras a la Escuela Hay muchos beneficios del Programa SRTS

There are a lot of options for utilizing healthy and active forms of getting to and from school:

Travelling to school safely is everyone’s priority and the City of Tigard Safe Routes to School Program is here to help!  

Learn more about Tigard’s Safe Routes to School program.
¿Qué es Safe Routes to School (Rutas seguras a la Escuela) (SRTS)?

Become a Parent Champion

Become a Parent ChampionParent champion
Sixteen parents from around Tigard’s six elementary schools gathered to learn more about Tigard’s Safe Route to Schools (SRTS) program. The SRTS program relies on parent volunteers and is a vital connection to increasing the number of students who walk, bike or roll to school. Parent volunteers work to organize events, spread the word to other parents and school staff, act as liaisons between the SRTS coordinator and their child’s school and much, much more.

The outreach event was organized to inform the community that the Safe Routes to School program is in search of parent volunteers and to inspire the community to get involved. Each parent was given a packet that offered up a menu of ways to get involved at their school. Tigard’s Safe Routes to School Coordinator, Anna Dragovich, hopes that more parents (and grandparents too!) will get involved and act as Parent Champions for their schools.

Reach out...
If you couldn’t make it to the event, but would like to know more, please contact Anna Dragovich, City of Tigard Safe Routes to School Coordinator at 503-718-2708.

SRTS Menu
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Tips to Increase Walking & Biking

Walking School Bus
A walking school bus is a group of children walking to school with one or more adult. It can be as informal as two families taking turns walking their children to school to a structured route with meeting points, a timetable, and a regularly rotating schedule of trained volunteers. Find out more or view the Walking School Bus Video.

Park & Walk
Sometimes students live outside a comfortable walking distance from school, but parents still want help relieve the congestion of traffic around schools and students still want to be able to walk. A great option is to Park & Walk — where parents drive (or carpool with others) partway to school and then their students walk the rest of the way. You can really Park & Walk from anywhere, but some ideas include city parks, church parking lots, or other meeting spots. You can even get a group to meet at the central location for kids to walk together.

SchoolPool
Tigard elementary and middle schools are a part of the Drive Less Connect SchoolPool Network. This is a free and secure online resource where parents can connect with other parents from their child’s school to form walking school buses, bike trains, or carpools. Each school is its own network and only parents with children at that school can join. Find out more
 

Action Plans

What is an Action Plan? 
The City of Tigard is working with parents, school staff, and the school district to develop school specific Action Plans. Action Plans identify the key barriers to walking and biking and then prioritizes strategies to address these barriers. Strategies can be encouragement events, education, engineering/ infrastructure, and enforcement. 

What are your barriers?
In order to develop an Action Plan that fully address the barriers to walking and biking to school, we need to hear from you!

  • Use this online geoform survey to submit information about the barriers or issues you face in the walk or bike to school.
  • See the fully interactive SRTS Barrier Map for all Tigard-area schools.
     

Walking Wednesdays

Walking Wednesdays… learn more about monthly events where families can meet and then walk or bike to school together.

Local School Initiatives

The following are some of the current Safe Routes to School initiatives at each school: 

Alberta Rider Elementary:

  • Alberta Rider participated in International Walk & Bike to School Day on October 7, 2015. With the goal to build off this event for future SRTS activities including National Walk & Bike to School Day in May and other program components. 
  • The SRTS Coordinator has done some initial work with the Alberta Rider PSO.

CF Tigard Elementary:

  • CF Tigard kicked off its work on Safe Routes to School with an International Walk & Bike to School Day event on October 7, 2015. Events are a great way to establish early interest and provide a springboard for future SRTS work.
  • The SRTS coordinator is working with the CF Tigard Safety Meeting as a way to integrate work on a Safe Routes to School Program.

Deer Creek Elementary: 

  • While outside the City limits, Deer Creek Elementary has many students from Tigard. School staff is working with Washington County Safe Routes to School, City of Tigard, and Tigard-Tualatin School District to plan a walk audit and identify safety improvements.

Durham Elementary:

  • Durham hosts Walk & Bike to School Day events each October and May. These events usually include two large walking school buses, with over 50 students in each group.
  • Durham Elementary currently has a crossing guard to assist students crossing Durham Rd. at 79th Ave. While an expanded crossing guard program is needed throughout the Tigard-Tualatin School District, many parents have cited that the presence of a crossing guard on Durham Rd. is one of the primary reasons they allow their children to walk or bike to school.
  • With support from the principal and some interested parents, Durham is in the early stages of developing a formal SRTS Task Force. A February meeting will set a course for continued Safe Routes to School work at Durham.
  • A probable next step for the Durham Task Force will be to work on an Action Plan. An Action Plan identifies the barriers to walking and biking to school and prioritizes strategies to address those barriers. Essentially an Action Plan establishes a school specific roadmap for a comprehensive Safe Routes to School Program.

Mary Woodward Elementary: 

  • Mary Woodward kicked off work on Safe Routes to School with International Walk & Bike to School Day. October was the first time the school participated. The event was wildly successful with parents and volunteers leading a number of walking school buses (groups of students walking to school), including a park and walk from the Walnut St. Fire Station.
  • With engaged parents and support from the principal, Mary Woodward is in the early stages of developing a formal SRTS Task Force that will focus on an Action Plan and continued Safe Routes to School programming for students and parents.
  • Although nearby neighborhoods to the west are in the Beaverton School District, Mary Woodward Elementary draws students from as far as the Bull Mountain area of Tigard. Steep terrain and busy arterial streets are manageable pedestrian barriers when students have the confidence a Safe Routes to School program instills. 

Metzger Elementary: 

  • Metzger hosts Walk & Bike to School Day events each October and May. These events are highly successful with widespread participation.
  • A couple of trail projects are improving connections to Metzger Elementary.
    • Oak Way Trail: In September 2014, the City partnered with neighbors, staff, and volunteers on a new bike and pedestrian path connecting Metzger Elementary School and the Learning Tree Child Care Center.
    • Lincoln Street Trail: This 300 foot soft-trail project will complete a key connection for students and parents walking to Metzger Elementary. The future trail will connect Oak St. to Lincoln St. near the southwest corner of Metzger Elementary. The project was approved in January 2016 with completion scheduled by May/ June 2016.  
  • The city and the school district have entered into a joint use agreement for the fields at Metzger Elementary to allow public use as a park outside of school hours. Access to the Metzger School Park, and thus the school, will be a major component of the project. This future park will serve an area of the City without easy access to developed parks and will engage the community in planning and programming for the park.

Templeton Elementary: 

  • A SRTS Task Force comprised of parents, school staff, district staff and city representatives meets monthly to plan and implement a Templeton Safe Routes to School Program.
  • The Templeton SRTS Task Force adopted the Templeton Action Plan in April 2016. This Action Plan lists the known barriers to walking, biking or rolling to Templeton Elementary and identifies the potential engineering and programmatic strategies to address those barriers.
  • Walk Audits were held on November 16 & 17, 2015 to observe conditions at Templeton drop-off and pick-up as part of the Action Plan development process. Parents, students, the principal, and city staff walk the neighborhood to observe and record barriers to walking and biking to school.
  • Templeton has established a monthly walk & bike event, where the first Wednesday of each month is Templeton Walk & Bike to School Day. A monthly date helps establish a routine of walking or biking to school, and demonstrates to parents that kids can use active transportation to school year-round. Additionally, a number of parents are using this monthly date to establish informal walking school buses or bike trains, with a goal of increasing the frequency of their students walking and biking to school.

Walk & Bike to School Day

Walk and Bike to School Day Art Contest Winner
During the month of January, the Safe Routes to School program teamed up with Mary Woodward Elementary students and the Tigard-Tualatin School District Art Literacy program to organize an art contest. The grand prize winner will be featured on the spring Walk and Bike to School Day Poster.

At a school-wide assembly, Mayor Cook awarded two winners from each grade, Kindergarten through 5th. Elise Abouzeid, a 4th grade student, was presented with the grand prize. She received a brand new backpack, art supplies and her artwork will be featured on the May Walk and Bike to School Day poster. This project helps raise awareness for the bi-annual Walk and Bike to School Day to be held Wednesday, May 10. Her award winning art work is shown here. 
 
SRTS grand prizeWalk and Bike Art Work
 

Resources

Year in Review Report: 2016-17

SAFE ROUTES TO SCHOOL YEAR IN REVIEW REPORT 2016-17
Read the full report:  SRTS Year in Review Report

SRTS Report

 

Contact
Anna Dragovich
Safe Routes to School Coordinator
503-718-2708 | Email

Tigard's Safe Routes to School Program is made possible with support from Metro and the Federal Transit Administration


Safe Routes to School Maps
Generic SRTS Map

Walking School Buses – Start One Today!
A walking school bus is a group of children walking to school with one or more adults. The flexibility of the walking school bus makes it appealing to communities of all sizes with varying needs.

Walking school bus

Start Simple!
Remember the program can always grow; it often makes sense to start with a small bus and see how it works. Choose a group of parents and children in your neighborhood who are interested.

  1. Invite families who live nearby to walk.
  2. Pick a route and take a test walk.
  3. Decide how often the group will walk together.

Have Fun!
Walking School Buses have many benefits:

  • It increases supervision, safety, and fun for students who already walk.
  • It permits additional students to walk, introducing them to an important and easy habit.
  • It reduces auto traffic, particularly near schools during drop-off and pick-up times.
  • It creates a sense of community by getting neighbors to take turns as bus drivers.
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