Celebrity Mum Claudia Karvan joined a ‘bike bus’ of up to 200 children, parents and teachers from Crown Street Public School this morning for national Bicycle Network Ride2School Day.
Thousands of children across Australia took to two wheels to show how active transport can make for healthy, alert and happy kids. At least 7 schools within the City of Sydney took part.
Lord Mayor Clover Moore, greeted a ‘bike bus’ of students dressed in green at Crown Street Public School in Surry Hills this morning.
“Thirty years ago, more than 80 per cent of children rode bikes to school or walked, but that has fallen to only 20 per cent today,” the Lord Mayor said.
“Incredibly, most students still live within two kilometres of the school gate. They just need safe, well connected bike lanes and our experience shows that if you build the infrastructure people will ride.”
“Children who ride or walk to school arrive clear-headed and ready to learn. It also reduces traffic congestion during peak drop-off and pick-up times, and means fewer parking problems on local streets.”
School principal Craig Nielsen, led the bike bus, said: “Riding together to school ticks so many boxes. It’s good exercise, it’s sustainable, and it makes for healthy hearts and minds.
“We already have more than a third of pupils riding to school, and we had nearly 100 per cent participation today.”
Latest independent counts show an 89 per cent increase in the number of bike trips across Sydney over the past two-and-a-half years.
Ride2School day is also an opportunity to teach children to cycle safely in the community. Children under the age of 12 are allowed ̶ and encouraged ̶ to ride bikes on footpaths.
Participating schools in the City of Sydney Local Government Area are now in the running to win a voucher from a bike shop or the inaugural Sydney Cycleways Ride2School Day Trophy. Prizes will be awarded to the school with the greatest percentage of students walking or riding to school on the day.
Riding a bike is encouraged beyond Ride2School Day with The Hands Up! active travel survey conducted once a month to monitor how many students continue riding to school. More information: ride2School.com.au.
The City of Sydney also supports local schools with free courses at the Sydney Park Cycling Centre. Designed for 8-10 year olds, the junior program focuses on the skills young riders need to use a bike safely on shared paths and footpaths. Since late 2011, about 90 courses have been held involving dozens of local schools and about 1,200 students each year.
Over the past two years, the City has also installed 26 bike racks at local schools for up to 113 bikes.
For more information, contact City of Sydney Senior Media Adviser Leanne Bridges, phone 0434 320 768 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
For interviews with Lord Mayor Clover Moore, contact Matt Levinson 0427 044 768 or email@example.com