By Max Davies
PRIMARY schools across Australia last week banded together in encouraging their students to walk to school to celebrate National Walk Safely to School Day.
The day aims to raise awareness of the health, road safety, transport and environmental benefits that regular active transport such as walking or cycling can provide for the long-term wellbeing of children.
Broadford Primary School was one of multiple schools in the area to encourage students to walk to school last Friday, with families and staff meeting at the island in Lions Park before walking along Sunday Creek to the school.
School captain Lyla McMahon said Walk Safely to School Day provided the school community a chance to connect and socialise while walking.
“Walking to school is a great opportunity to become fit and healthy. Parents can teach their children about school crossings while also showing them the road rules,” she said.
“To help with pollution, we can encourage parents to use public transport like school buses or carpool, which would help with traffic jams. It might be a difficult change for parents because of work, and not everybody lives close to public transport.”
This year’s walk saw school students meet on the school grounds for a breakfast provided by staff, while members of the Seymour Highway Patrol were on hand to direct traffic as participants crossed Murchison Street outside the Broadford cemetery.
Broadford Primary School walk organiser Carly Simons said the school was able to build on the success of last year’s walk and make changes to improve the event.
“We had more staff placed around the path, obviously having the Seymour Highway Patrol help was absolutely brilliant, and we had more of an idea of how to best get the breakfast out quickly,” she said.
“The safety on the island was better this year, the weather is beautiful and we all had our special Walk to School tattoos from the organisers, which was great too.”