Announcing the IWALK CHALLENGE WINNERS 2014!
This is the second post announcing the winners of the Feet First IWALK Challenge! 107 schools across Washington hosted walk to school events during the month of October in 2014. Following those schools were invited to submit descriptions of their walks to Feet First for a chance to win prizes. We received submissions from all over the state and learned how people can adapt to suit their community needs. Here are their stories!
Pioneer Elementary School from Olympia WA
Winner of the Classroom Mini-grant Prize!
This year Pioneer Elementary reached out to their students by holding a Walk and Roll Day to promote pedestrian safety. Students met up at four different locations on their journey to school and were joined by Olympia Mayor Pro Tem, the Olympia Police Department, local high school cheerleaders the high school Mascot to build participants’ enthusiasm. Walking to school and the Walk and Roll event has become part of Pioneer Elementary School culture and the principal is very supportive of the program. Principal Weeks was quoted in The Olympian newspaper saying “I wish every day was Walk N Roll Day!” Pioneer Elementary was chosen to be the winner of the Classroom Mini-Grant Prize, which comes as a generous donation from the Washington State PTA. The panel of judges chose Pioneer because their walk to school event was high-energy, fun and well established as a school tradition. They were also impressed by the level of collaboration between the school and community partners.
Carson Elementary from Puyallup WA
Winner of the Seattle Skyline Socks Prize!
400 Carson Elementary Students — nearly half the student body! — walked together with friends, family and school staff on International Walk to School Day in October. Students met at a Walking School Bus start location and were greeted by the school mascot Cody Coyote. He handed out “Carson Coins” which are tokens that can be used in their Treasure Tower that holds a variety of treats for students. Carson is a walking school with very limited bus service. It is also the largest elementary in the district, with a student count of 971. While many children already walk year round, the volume of drivers to and from the school each day creates what event organizers call, “an extreme safety hazard” around the school during arrival and departure. Organizers go on to explain that, “celebrating International Walk to School Day this year was exciting because it not only honored our parents that volunteer, everyday, rain or shine, to escort students to and from school, it also encouraged people who don’t usually walk to give it a try.” The 25 pairs of athletic socks, donated by Skyline Socks, may be a nice incentive for those parent champions to keep on walking! Congratulations, Carson Elementary!
Washington Elementary from Wenatchee WA, winner of the “Bucket of Fun” Prize!
With a large number of students who already use active transportation to get to Washington Elementary, IWALK organizers worked hard to promote safety education to their students who already walk. They also encouraged more students to participate by hosting a walking to school event. Students were joined by the local police department and supported by many participating school staff members. With families, and school staff members joining in on the fun it gave everyone a chance to share tips about walking to school safely. To honor those efforts and the high level of student participation, the celebrity panel of judges chose to award Washington Elementary with the “Bucket of Fun” prize. The prize includes educational games from the Seattle Department of Parks and Recreation. Enjoy, and congratulations, Washington Elementary!
In addition to the top prize winners, the Judges chose to recognize the following schools with “Honorable Mention” awards. We recognize you here for specific inspirations, and encourage you to keep being part of the Feet First IWALK Challenge!
John Rogers Elementary in Seattle
This was the first year that John Rogers Elementary School in Seattle participated in a Walking to School event. They promoted walking to school by giving calendars to students so that they could record days in which they walked to school. Organizers worked hard to include students who live too far from school to walk by encouraging students to take a walk on the weekend with their family or to arrange to walk to school with a friend who lives inside the walk area. Students who participated got their name in a drawing for a raffle prize. Congratulations John Rogers!
Daffodil Valley Elementary in Sumner
Students at Daffodil Valley Elementary School in Sumner WA had tremendous support from the school administration, teachers and organizers. They encouraged students to walk to school by integrating pedestrian safety education in their classrooms and holding a walk to school event on Oct. 15. Walkers were joined by East Pierce Fire & Rescue’s Fire and Life Safety Clowns who talked with students about safe pedestrian habits and choices. The Sumner Police Department provided an escort and blocked intersections allowing Daffodil Valley’s Walking School Bus to cross streets uninterrupted. Adding even more to the experience East Pierce Fire and Rescue’s fire engine and medic unit cruised alongside the walkers. Nice work Daffodil Valley!
View Ridge Elementary in Seattle
View Ridge Elementary School in Seattle showed their commitment to environmental health, student safety and health by holding 2 walk to school days with overwhelming turn-outs. The events broke their records for Walk to School Days. Students were excited to arrive and receive not only warm welcomes from parents and staff but stickers for their participation. Organizers worked tirelessly reaching out to students and families from multiple angles hoping for a success. With over 50% of View Ridge students walking to school in those two days, participants should be proud of their accomplishments! Congratulations View Ridge!
Follow this link if you’re interested in learning more about the 3 other schools that won prizes for their wonderful walk to school events through the Feet First 2014 IWALK Challenge.