"An hour a day of walking can help prevent childhood obesity"
Scott Gee, MD

Getting Started

If you are here, you have already passed the crucial first step of showing the initiative to make a positive impact in your community. The steps below provide a framework for a Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program based on what has worked in other communities. These steps are meant to provide guidance. Getting things done may require different approaches or using these steps in a different order. For more information on steps to get your Safe Routes to School Program started, please visit the SRTS Guidebook for the State of Texas.

  1. Bring together the right people: Identify people who want to make walking and bicycling to school safe and appealing for children. Sharing concerns, interests and knowledge among a variety of community members with diverse expertise can enable groups to tackle many issues.
  2. Hold a kick off meeting and set a vision: A goal of the first meeting is to create a vision and generate next steps for the group members.
  3. Gather information and identify issues: Collecting information can help to identify needed program elements and provide a means to measure the impact of the program later.
  4. Identify solutions: Solutions to identified issues will include a combination of education, encouragement, engineering and enforcement strategies. Safety is the first consideration.
  5. Make a plan: It doesn't need to be lengthy. Include encouragement, enforcement, education and engineering strategies. Create a time schedule for the plan.
  6. Get the plan and people moving: Hold a kick off event starting with a fun activity. Participate in International Walk to School Day or celebrate a Walking Wednesday.
  7. Evaluate, adjust and keep moving: To sustain the program, consider building additional program champions and letting people know about your successes.