The "Five E's" of Safe Routes to School

Flourishing Safe Routes to School projects see remarkable changes in the way students and parents choose to travel to and from school. These projects succeed by including each of the “Five E’s” of Safe Routes to School to ensure that their project is a well-rounded, multi-prong and time-tested approach to getting more students walking and bicycling. The Five E’s of Safe Routes to School include:

Evaluation – Monitoring and documenting outcomes, attitudes and trends through the collection of data before and after the intervention(s). (more info here)

Engineering – Creating operational and physical improvements to the infrastructure surrounding schools that reduce speeds and potential conflicts with motor vehicle traffic, and establish safer and fully accessible crossings, walkways, trails and bikeways(more info here)

Education – Teaching children about the broad range of transportation choices, instructing them in important lifelong bicycling and walking safety skills and launching driver safety campaigns in the vicinity of schools. (more info here)

Encouragement – Using events and activities to promote walking and bicycling and to generate enthusiasm for the program with students, parents, staff and surrounding community. (more info here)

Enforcement – Partnering with local law enforcement to ensure that traffic laws are obeyed in the vicinity of schools (this includes enforcement of speeds, yielding to pedestrians in crosswalks and proper walking and bicycling behaviors) and initiating community enforcement such as crossing guard programs and student safety patrols. (more info here)


Additional Resources

The single best resource for getting started locally is the Safe Routes to School Toolkit published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. We encourage you to review this how-to guidebook, which includes surveys, check lists, sample press releases, resolutions of support, fact sheets, curriculum, success stories, statistics, and more.

For more resources, please see our Helpful Links.