Started in spring of 2014, Kids on Wheels is the Active Transportation Alliance’s flagship bike safety educational program for school-aged children in the Chicagoland.
While we know that safe bicycling is best taught through doing, often we have found that schools are unable to commit to sustained programming as a result of the logistical challenges inherent to putting students on bikes.
These challenges include ensuring every student has access to a working bike, transporting the bikes to and from the school, and security options available at the school, to name a few.
Our solution to these challenges was to put a fleet of bikes and all the necessary equipment needed to provide bike safety lessons in a trailer and bring it all to the schools!
Working with our pilot school district in Oak Park provided the opportunity to hone our program.
In this program, we train the schools to provide the programming themselves as well as assist them with fundraising to purchase their own materials.
This past May, Active Trans wrapped its third year of Kids on Wheels programming to great success.
Our pilot school district of Oak Park District 97 completed its grant funded purchases of a trailer and fleet of bikes, and is fully equipped and trained to provide ongoing on bike safety programming.
Meanwhile, our original fleet and a second fleet, which was added in 2015, have been visiting school districts throughout Cook County assisting those districts on their path to self-sustained bike education programming.
We provided and facilitated programming in four school districts, accounting for 10 separate schools and reaching approximately 1,460 students.
We are excited with these successes and hope to continue to see schools embrace this type of programming once they have experienced it firsthand.
To find out more about bringing Kids on Wheels to your community, please send an email to [email protected]