Hugh A Bennett School received an Alberta Traffic Safety Fund grant from the Alberta Office of Traffic Safety in 2018. Realizing that their best outcome was concentrated education, they structured their grant project to focus on year-long learning for students and parents
The school team developed a number of Traffic Safety Initiatives that ran from the fall right through to the end of the school year.
To kick off the initiative staff developed a Traffic Safety Puzzle Board Game, made of four puzzle pieces that students were to earn. Students could earn a piece by using the crosswalk, walking to school, being a respectful citizen, and using drop off and pick up zones safely.
Students were instructed on safe behavior through assemblies and student leaders who visited each class with interactive safety messaging. Parents were involved through weekly newsletters and Twitter messages. Once they earned all four pieces they were able to exchange their completed puzzle for a small prize.
Students and staff continued to encourage safe traffic behavior by promoting Walking and Wheeling Wednesdays, to reduce traffic congestion. Teachers tracked how many students walked or rode their bike/scooter to school on Wednesdays. Those classes with the highest participation won safety prizes for their class provided by saferoads.com. Grand prizes for Walking and Wheeling Wednesdays also included class pizza parties.
To further involve students, the grade four children were invited to join the Traffic Safety Ambassador Club. Almost forty grade four students joined! These students came early to school to escort younger students from the designated Hug & Go zone to their classes so parents could move along quickly and reduce traffic congestion.
A final initiative ran in the spring which included another incentive geared promotion. Students were able to earn “Golden Tickets” by demonstrating safe and respectful traffic behavior. They could also earn a ticket by completing a Street Safe booklet, provided by saferoads.com. Once they earned five tickets, students were once again able to exchange them for a small prize and enter a grand prize draw for a new scooter and helmet. Community involvement included collaboration with Calgary Police Service Residential Traffic Enforcement, as well as School Resource and By-Law Officers. Student leaders were again involved in educating students and community members by creating a Traffic Safety Pamphlet that was sent home.
The year-long Traffic Safety Initiatives culminated on Calgary Bike to School Day on June 4, 2019 with representatives from the Calgary Police Service and the Alberta Office of Traffic Safety helping to hand out even more Golden Tickets.
Grand prizes were awarded, and the school celebrated with an assembly congratulating everyone on their contributions to improved traffic safety in their community.
The school plans to continue with their education campaign in the fall with a Traffic Safety Day and more incentives for safe behavior.
You’ll find more about Hugh A. Bennett School on our Twitter feed or our school website.
If you’d like to know more about our Traffic Safety Initiatives, feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.