12 June 2015

Schools across South Yorkshire are competing to become the top travel school in the region.

The challenge is for pupils and their families to travel to school in an active way over a 10 day period until Friday 19 June.

Around 60 schools and 18,000 children from across the county are taking on the challenge and competing against each other to be the South Yorkshire Active Travel School and to win prizes.

Pupils and staff, who travel to school in an active way, will get the chance to win prizes for themselves, their class and their school. Each person who completes the challenge will receive a certificate and a special badge. The more children and staff who complete the challenge the more opportunities there will be to win whole school prizes such as a visit from a theatre company or cycle stunt team, sports equipment vouchers or scooter or cycle storage.

Councillor Terry Fox, Sheffield City Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport said: “It’s great to see local schools getting involved in this challenge. The scheme will encourage more children to walk to school and hopefully continue to walk more in the future. It’s good exercise for them and reduces traffic congestion whilst improving the environment.”

Before and during the 10 day challenge, special activities and assemblies have been taking place to keep staff and pupils motivated. All the schools taking part received a resource pack full of helpful hints and tips and free classroom wall charts and stickers for pupils to monitor progress during the challenge.

Several schools in Sheffield are rising to the challenge. Netherthorpe Primary School will be walked to school with Professor Brainstorm on Wednesday (10 June), Watercliffe Meadow, Sheffield is on an adventure walk to school with Indiana Jones next Wednesday (17 June) and Stannington Infants and Norton Free Primary Schools will be giggling all the way to school with the help of performers from Green Top Circus.

Chris Holder, Executive Head Teacher at Norton Free Primary School said: “The Active Travel Challenge is a great way of encouraging more of our pupils to walk to school. We wanted to make it an entertaining experience that they would all enjoy as they learned more about the benefits of walking to school. Hopefully, this will encourage them to walk more and benefit from the fresh air and exercise.”

Sarah Binns, Head Teacher at Stannington Infant School added: “We were keen to be involved in the Active Travel Challenge this year. We are aiming to make it a fun event and really hope it will encourage our pupils to walk to school more often in the future.”

Ends

Notes for editors:

Thursday 18 June – Stannington Infant School pupils are meeting in Stannington Park (Oldfield Terrace entrance) at 8.30am and walking to school together. Once at school there will be a short performance in the playground before the bell rings.