Press releases

SC SRTS Resource Center Hosts Second Annual Statewide SRTS Forum

June, 2016

COLUMBIA - The Safe Routes to Schools (SRTS) Resource Center held their Second Annual Statewide Forum on Thursday, June 9, 2016. The event was held at Irmo Middle School from 8:30 am until 3:30 pm with more than 80 people registered from around the state.

Ian Lockwood of Toole Design Group (Photo by Rob Thompson, SCDOT)Participants heard from SRTS champions, bicycle and pedestrian advocates, SCDOT officials, and public health professionals. Plenary and breakout sessions covered topics such as bicycle and pedestrian safety, ways to encourage walking and bicycling to and from school, and infrastructure planning and strategies. While attendees enjoyed lunch, Ian Lockwood, P.E., provided the keynote presentation. Mr. Lockwood is a recognized national leader in sustainable transportation policy and urban design. Based in Toole Design Group’s Orlando office, Ian’s current work includes walkability projects, restoring one-way streets to two-way, taming arterials, shared spaces, policy reform, and designing main streets, campuses, and downtowns.  

Presentations and complete details about the Forum are available at:  http://www.scsaferoutes.org/events/forum   

The Safe Routes to School Resource Center is a federally-funded project of the South Carolina Department of Transportation. It provides hands-on education, promotional, and planning support to partnered schools throughout South Carolina in order to enable and encourage children to walk and ride bicycles. Services and materials are provided at no cost to K-8th grade schools and their communities.

For more information about the SRTS Forum, other events, materials, and opportunities to participate in SRTS programs, contact the Resource Center’s School Outreach Coordinators, or go to www.SCSafeRoutes.org.

For additional information about SCDOT’s SRTS programs, please contact Rodney Oldham, SCDOT Safe Routes to School State Coordinator at oldhamr@scdot.org

Photo of Ian Lockwood by Rob Thompson, SCDOT

South Carolina Safe Routes to School and its Resource Center Award Planning Assistance to Three Schools

April, 2016

Columbia, SC – SC Safe Routes to School (SRTS) and its Resource Center announced today that three schools in South Carolina have been awarded Action Plan Assistance: Alice Drive Elementary School in Sumter, Pepperhill Elementary in North Charleston, and Ocean Drive Elementary in North Myrtle Beach. School Outreach Coordinators with the Resource Center will begin working with the selected schools immediately to collect the necessary data for the planning assistance process. This fall, the SRTS Action Plan Assistance process will bring together key stakeholders to collaborate and identify what the needs are and how to improve walking and biking conditions at all three schools. Interested parties are encouraged to participate.

SRTS action plans include strategies which incorporate the Five E's of Safe Routes to School: Education, Encouragement, Enforcement and Evaluation activities, as well as Engineering recommendations for physical changes to sidewalks, roadway crossings, and trails leading to campus. Ideas and recommendations developed during the Action Planning Assistance process will assist in creating a well-balanced approach to building a SRTS program at the schools. These recommendations can be the basis for grants and/or improvements initiated by the schools, school districts, local governments, and various organizations.

The Safe Routes to School Resource Center is a federally-funded project of the South Carolina Department of Transportation that provides education, encouragement, and planning support to over 400 school partners throughout South Carolina that partner with the Resource Center. Services and materials are provided at no cost to K-8th grade schools and their communities.

Contact the Resource Center’s School Outreach Coordinators or go to SCSafeRoutes.org for more information about events, materials, and opportunities to participate.

South Carolina Safe Routes to School Has Successful Fall 2015 Including Most Successful IWalk Ever!

December, 2015

Fall 2015 was a big success for the South Carolina Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Program and its Resource Center! International Walk to School Day was a record-breaking event, the 2nd annual SC Crossing Guard Appreciation Week was promoted, and the Resource Center facilitated a webinar on developing SRTS Travel Plans!

Coordinated by the South Carolina Department of Transportation’s (SCDOT) Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Program and its Resource Center, International Walk to School Day (IWalk) is a worldwide event that had more than 5,031 schools and partners registered nationwide at www.walkbiketoschool.org through October 2015.  International Walk to School Day broke records in South Carolina this year too.  Schools and community partners across the state registered 343 events at www.walkbiketoschool.org. Also, according to event registration information provided by schools, more than 131,000 students participated statewide. Spartanburg County lead the way once again with 62 events registered with International Walk to School Day – ranking them the county with the most events in the state!

November 16-20, 2015, was the second annual South Carolina Crossing Guard Appreciation Week sponsored by SCDOT and the Resource Center. As a part of the observance, the Resource Center accepted nominations for Outstanding Crossing Guards from across the state. SCDOT then reviewed the nominations and recognized five Outstanding Crossing Guards during SC Crossing Guard Appreciation Week:

  • Emma Taylor at Jesse Boyd Elementary, Spartanburg
  • Marcel McNeil at League Academy, Greenville
  • Shirley Nelson at South Kilbourne Elementary, Columbia
  • Laura Lewis at Red Cedar Elementary, Bluffton
  • Jeff Hainley at Mamie P. Whitesides Elementary, Mt. Pleasant

This fall, the Resource Center developed and introduced multiple new resources for schools and communities to strengthen their SRTS programs.

  • A 2015-2016 wall calendar was developed to conveniently list all of the 2015-2016 SRTS events. Contact your School Outreach Coordinator to request a copy of the calendar.
  • Updated certificates and letters of appreciation were created for schools to use to recognize their Crossing Guards during SC Crossing Guard Appreciation Week.
  • SCDOT’s SRTS Program and its Resource Center developed a series of eight Planning Tip Sheets that schools and communities may use to develop a Safe Routes to School plan for their own community. These Planning Tip Sheets were discussed during a webinar on October 29th. A recording of the webinar can be viewed here.

The Safe Routes to School Resource Center is a federally-funded project of SCDOT that provides education, encouragement, and planning support to schools throughout South Carolina that partner with the Resource Center. Services and materials are provided at no cost to K-8 schools and their communities. The program is looking forward to an exciting spring highlighted by the 5th annual South Carolina Walk and Roll to School Day on March 9, 2016, and National Bike to School Day on May 4, 2016.

Contact the Resource Center’s School Outreach Coordinators and go to SCSafeRoutes.org for more information about events, materials, and opportunities to participate. 

For more information about International Walk to School Day, visit www.walkbiketoschool.org.

Information about SC Walk to School Day is available at www.scsaferoutes.org.

South Carolina Safe Routes to School Forum

June, 2015

COLUMBIA - The South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) is inviting educators, school administrators, local officials, planners, engineers, parents, and all interested persons from across the state to a free Safe Routes to Schools (SRTS) Forum.  The event – the first of its kind in the state – will be held from 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 18, 2015, at Spring Valley High School in Columbia.

Participants will hear from SRTS champions, bicycle and pedestrian advocates, SCDOT officials, and public health professionals. Plenary and breakout sessions will cover topics such as bicycle and pedestrian safety, ways to encourage walking and bicycling to and from school, and infrastructure planning and strategies. While attendees enjoy lunch, Andrew Kaczynski, PhD, will provide the keynote presentation. Dr. Kaczynski is a faculty member in the Department of Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior, a co-investigator with the CDC Prevention Research Center, and Director of the Built Environment and Community Health (BEACH) Laboratory (www.beachlab.sc.edu) within the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina.

Registration, agenda, and complete details about the Forum are available at:  http://www.scsaferoutes.org/events/forum   Registration closes on Sunday, June 14, 2015, so do not delay in signing up to participate!

The SC Safe Routes to School Resource Center is a federally-funded project of the South Carolina Department of Transportation. It provides hands-on education, promotional, and planning support to partnered schools throughout South Carolina to help build and sustain SRTS programs. Services and materials are provided at no cost to K-8th grade schools and their communities.

For more information about the SRTS Forum, other events, materials, and opportunities to participate in SRTS programs, contact the Resource Center’s School Outreach Coordinators, or go to www.SCSafeRoutes.org.

For additional information about SCDOT’s SRTS program, please contact Rodney Oldham, SCDOT Safe Routes to School State Coordinator at oldhamr@scdot.org

Communities throughout South Carolina Set to Participate in National Bike to School Day on Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

April, 2015

Charleston, SC - Students across the country will celebrate National Bike to School Day and Bicycle Month in May. The fourth annual National Bike to School Day is on Wednesday, May 6th. Sponsored by the National Center for Safe Routes to School, this event builds on the popularity and success of International Walk to School Day, held throughout the world every October and encourages schools across the country to take part in bike-focused activities. Bike to School Day events help to raise awareness of the need for safer routes for bicycling and walking, emphasize the need to increase physical activity among children, help to improve bicycle safety skills, and serve to reduce traffic congestion.

Here in South Carolina, schools and communities are planning to host a variety of events including encouraging students to bike to school, educating students about bicycle safety, and holding bicycle rodeos and assemblies. Schools’ bicycle and pedestrian safety education efforts are supported by the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) and the SC Safe Routes to School Resource Center, a federally-funded project of SCDOT. The Resource Center provides education, encouragement, and planning support to elementary and middle schools throughout the state at no cost to the schools or their communities.

National Bike to School Day and Walk to School Days help schools initiate conversations about how increased participation in walking and biking transportation modes can:

  • Enhance health by increasing students’ physical activity
  • Improve air quality by reducing car emissions around schools
  • Make streets safer by reducing traffic congestion
  • Educate people about bicycle, pedestrian, and general traffic safety

To register a school event, please visit www.walkbiketoschool.org.  For more information, please go to
www.SCSafeRoutes.org or call the Resource Center hotline at 1.855.4SC.SRTS.

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