The Walking Bus is a form of school transport. The Walking Bus consists of a group of children, walking with at least two adult volunteers e.g. parents, midday supervisors or teaching assistants.
One volunteer acts as the ‘driver’, who leads the way, the other acts as the ‘conductor’ at the back of the bus. The Walking Bus follows a set route, stopping at agreed pick-up points of ‘bus stops’ on the route.
The benefits of a Walking Bus:
- It promotes social interaction and independence
- Children learn good road safety skills
- It incorporates walking into a child’s daily routine
- It reduces congestion and pollution near schools
Ideas to help you set up a Walking Bus:
- Establish a working group. School support and volunteer enthusiasm is essential for a successful Walking Bus scheme. The Bus benefits from a ‘Walking Bus Coordinator’ such as an enthusiastic parent, teaching assistant or parent governor, as initially it can be time consuming.
- The route. The school should plot the route and proposed ‘bus stops’ on a map. The route must be risk assessed by the school before commencement of the Walking Bus.
- Reflective jackets – Travelchoice can loan a starter pack of up to 15 reflective jackets (5 adult, 10 children)
- Mobile phones(s) – essential that there is one mobile phone in case of emergencies
- Incentives – contact Travelchoice, firstname.lastname@example.org, for a variety of resources(stickers, vouchers etc)
Travelchoice has developed a number of documents to help you set up your Walking Bus: