How would you encourage Calgary’s children (and their parents) to choose active modes of transportation for travel to and from school?
One of the outcomes the Board of Trustees has embedded in policy is that, “Students will make lifestyle choices based upon healthy attitudes and actions and be able to assume responsibility for personal well-being,” and the board monitors progress towards this result annually. As the sole mandate and focus of resources of the Calgary Board of Education is to educate children, many schools have assemblies to help children understand that there are safe and healthy modes of travel to and from school, send messages home in school newsletters to parents, and utilize their community liaison police officer to assist with traffic messaging. Often times, it is the work that is done through grassroots initiatives at the school council that are most effective; for example, “The Walk to School Day” or “The Walking School Bus.” The CBE recently supported the Traffic Safety Week of Sept. 23-27 which delivered strong messaging about some strategies to deal with traffic congestion around schools that communities may wish to implement. A poster contest was a part of the Traffic Safety Week. Certainly, as a Trustee, there is great opportunity to actively participate in these events, share best practice with our communities, and to highlight these initiatives at the system level.
How would you work with parents and the City to provide safe routes to walk and bike to Calgary’s schools, including traffic safety measures in the vicinity of the schools themselves?
I already have a record of facilitating local conversations between parents, community associations, principals and the city councillors about student traffic concerns near schools so that we could arrive at solutions that best met the safety needs of students. While City of Calgary dollars are responsible for traffic safety studies, crosswalk implementation, and traffic calming measures as well as clearing snow from public pathways, I will continue to advocate for our students in partnership with parents, community and the City.