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School kids take to the streets

News release

29 February 2008

School kids take to the streets

Children in more than 60 primary schools around the Greater Wellington will move out of the car and onto the footpaths when the Feet First Walk to School Week kicks off next Monday (3 March).

An initiative of Land Transport NZ, the Feet First programme is coordinated in the Wellington region by Greater Wellington.

Fran Wilde, chair of Greater Wellington, said the programme aimed to encourage those children who were not in the habit of walking to school to “give it a go. And with this run of stunning weather in the region, there’s even more of an incentive for kids to take part in the event this year.

“Walking to school is a fun way to increase fitness, learn road sense and get to know your neighbourhood. For parents and carers, it’s a great way to spend chat time with your kids and it’s environmentally friendly.”

The highlight of the week is Walk to School Day on Wednesday 5 March, when some schools will aim to have every child make the journey on foot.

Participating schools will be vying for prizes of school breakfasts and sports gear for the highest number of students involved.

The event’s momentum will be maintained through Walking Wednesdays, where children are encouraged to walk to school at least one day each week for the next six weeks. There will be prizes for the classes with the highest participation during this period.

Fran Wilde said she hoped the Feet First programme would encourage more schools in the Wellington region to promote alternative means for children to get to and from school other than in a car.

“Greater Wellington staff are keen to help schools set up travel plans which may include walking school buses, cycling, carpooling and establishing safe drop-off zones. A number of schools in the region already have walking buses but of course it would be fantastic for every school to have an active travel plan in place.”


Reporters please note:details of what’s happening in the Wellington region are attached.

What’s happening in the Greater Wellington Region?

Monday 3 March

* The national launch of Feet First Walk to School will be held at Lyall Bay School.

Minister of Transport, Hon. Annette King will walk with students, parents and teachers from the children’s playground in Lyall Parade at 8.30am to Lyall Bay school in Freyburg Street. Fran Wilde, chair of the Greater Wellington Regional Council, and Superintendent Paula Rose, national manager Road Policing, will walk with her. The road safety mascot Zanda the Zebra will greet children as they arrive.

Wednesday 5 March

* Jeanettte Fitzsimons, Green Party co-leader and MP, will walk to school with students from Wadestown School for Walk to School Day.

Friday 7 March

* Greenacres School, Raroa Tce, Linden (ph 04 232 6445) will hold a “Walk to School” party from 8.30am – 9am.

* Hon. Darren Hughes, MP for Otaki, will walk to school with children from Waikanae School.

Please also check the Feet First webpages for an updated list of activities.

© Scoop Media

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