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    No School Bus? No Problem!

    Student Safety on the Way to School: A Toolkit for Parents

    Kick off the morning with a walk or bike ride to school!

    Walking and biking are great ways for children to get to school safely and develop healthy habits for the rest of their lives. An active commute can help build community in the neighborhood, prevent obesity, and reduce traffic around schools. Children who walk and bike to school also have the opportunity to learn how to navigate their neighborhood safely as skilled, independent pedestrians.

    Whether your child is getting ready to start their first walk to school, or they are an expert bicyclist, this toolkit is here to help parents and caregivers get the most out of their child's trip to school!

    student sitting on a bicycleSafety on the Way to School

    Walk Maps

    The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) provides custom walk maps for every Seattle Public School. Maps identify streets with sidewalks, designated school crossings, and other safety features to help parents and students find their safest route to school.

    Check out SDOT’s Safe Routes to School webpage to get your walk map!

    Crossing Guards

    Adult Crossing Guards are a great way to bring safety to busy intersections during school arrival and departure times. The Crossing Guard job is a paid position, and Seattle Public Schools needs many more guards to help keep kids safe. Contact the Seattle Public School District to apply.

    Safety Around the School

    Student drop-off and pick-up can cause traffic hazards for walkers and bikers near the school. It is important for families who drive their children to school to foster a safe and comfortable environment for student walkers and bikers by being extra alert and respecting pedestrian space.

    • Make sure to follow your school’s arrival and departure procedures
    • Twenty is Plenty! Vehicles traveling below 20mph cause less serious injuries that faster vehicles
    • As a driver, you can help create a community for student walkers by giving pedestrians extra space

    Involving the School

    Safety Campaigns

    Safety and encouragement campaigns are a great way to engage the school community in a collective effort to increase walking and biking to school. The Where Do I Begin? campaign guide helps parents, volunteers, or school staff start programs such as a Walking School Bus, Bike Train, Pace Car, and other initiatives.

    King County School Pool

    Schools can establish an online carpooling system using King County School Pool. School Pool is a free, safe, and secure carpool matching service that connects you with other parents and caregivers of kids who attend your child’s school. Visit the King County Rideshare webpage to learn how to get started.

    Free Incentives

    School safety champions can request free safety -themed stickers, temporary tattoos, and wristbands as incentives for their walk and bike to school campaign. Visit SDOT’s Safe Routes to School Incentives webpage to place a request.

    Bicycle Racks

    Is your school lacking adequate bicycle parking? Request a bicycle rack for you school through SDOT’s Bicycle Program.

    Mini Grants

    SDOT’s Mini Grant Program provides up to $1,000 to schools, PTAs, and community groups to encourage walking and biking to school through education and encouragement projects. Apply for a mini grant to support a safety campaign, purchase pedestrian crossing flags, paint an intersection, start a student safety patrol, and many other programs! Learn more on SDOT’s Mini Grant webpage.

    Taking it to the Streets

    The Seattle Department of Transportation is always working to make streets safer for children walking and biking to school. The Seattle Safe Routes to School Engineering Toolkit describes how SDOT improves infrastructure around schools.

    Want to report a dangerous intersection or safety issue? Use the Find It Fix It app, or fill out a Service Request Form at

    Parents or school staff can also reach out to the Seattle School Traffic Safety Committee for traffic and circulation support at your school.

    Seattle School Traffic Safety Committee