Tips for walking to school safely

5 top tips for parents and carers.

Primary school children are often encouraged to walk and commute safely to school for National Walk Safely to School Day. This annual event is a great opportunity to highlight the importance of being a safe road user and to encourage, schools, parents, carers and students to work together for a safer future.

Get involved

Anyone can take part in Walk Safely to School Day. Those living further afield are encouraged to park or alight the bus, further away from school and walk the rest of the way. Many schools have adopted this system to improve traffic congestion around schools. Walk Safely to School Day is a great way to promote safe behaviours when walking to school and encourage an increase in physical activity.

Here are our top tips to make the most of Walk Safely to School day for your child now and into the future

  1. Be alert and aware

    Take note of the dangers you come across on your walk and bring them to your child's attention. Point out dangers, such as vehicles coming out of driveways. Talk to your child about being alert in a road environment.

  2. Hold hands

    When on the footpath, at a crossing or in a car park always hold your child's hand. It is advised to do this up to the age of at least 8 years old and closely supervise until at least the age of 10.

  3. Choose a safe crossing

    Lead by example and choose a safe place to cross the road. Explain why it is the safest place to cross.

  4. Set a good example

    Your child watches everything you do, so if you cross at the crossing they will too. It is also important to share these messages with other carers who may walk with your child to school.

  5. Stop, Look, Listen, Think every time you cross the road

    Discuss this important road safety message STOP! one step back from the kerb. LOOK! continuously look both ways. LISTEN! for the sounds of approaching traffic. THINK! whether it is safe to cross.

Practise makes perfect

The more supervised practice your child can get the better, so why not make Walk to School Safely Day the start of a new routine to walk to school more often.

Older children may be ready to make the journey to school independently. Before they take this step, observe if they are road safe and reinforce the road safety messages.

For more information, check out the Department of Education's pedestrian safety advice for students, parents and carers.

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