Kid Commute: A Walking School Bus initiative
About Kid Commute: A Walking School Bus Initiative
The Society for Children and Youth of BC and TransLink have partnered with participating municipalities to deliver Kid Commute: a Walking School Bus initiative set to launch in September 2023 at select elementary schools throughout Metro Vancouver.
If you have any questions or would like to find out more about Kid Commute 2023, please refer to the FAQ on this web page or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Check out the video below from About Here to understand more about school congestion issues and the impact of initiatives like the Walking School Bus!
Much like a traditional yellow school bus, a WSB is a group of students who travel to and from school each day along a designated route, stopping along the way to pick up more students. The bus is supported by trained adult Walk Leaders, who walk with the group daily. The bus is powered not by an engine, but on foot, by the students themselves as they walk to and from school.
Kid Commute is a regional WSB program that will run every day at pick-up and drop-off times at select elementary schools throughout Metro Vancouver beginning in September 2023. Each school’s bus will follow a scheduled route with designated stops, led by either a volunteer or a paid Walk Leader. The program was developed by TransLink in response to the need for safer school zones, reduced emissions, and the promotion of school active travel and healthy children in the region.
We are in the process of identifying schools to participate in Kid Commute 2023. Check back for updates in the Spring of 2023!
For a great overview of the need for initiatives like Kid Commute to combat school congestion, check out this video from About Here and TransLink!
The benefits of a WSB are felt by the entire community!
- Improves physical and mental health
- Creates an opportunity to make new friends through shared experiences
- Inherent sense of belonging in being a part of a group
- Increases independence and self-esteem
- Addresses parental safety concerns
- Grows and strengthens social network
- Addresses parental time constraints at drop-off and pick-up
- Save money on fuel
- Reduces vehicle congestion around schools
- Reduces greenhouse gas emissions
- Improves air quality in communities
- Addresses student tardiness and absenteeism
- Strengthens the school’s social capital
Kid Commute was piloted in the City of Vancouver and the City of North Vancouver in 2021-22. Eight schools participated in the pilot, with students walking over 8,000 km over the course of the program. Families reported participating for various reasons:
- 21% for health reasons
- 18% to promote independence
- 15% because it was good for the environment
- 15% to increase their connection to the community
- 15% participated because the program fit their routine
- 10% to increase activity levels
The Kid Commute initiative is launching in the City of Vancouver, the City of New Westminster and the District of North Vancouver in September 2023!
Participating schools are Bayview Elementary, Edith Cavell Elementary and Wək̓ʷan̓əs tə syaqʷəm Elementary in the City of Vancouver.
In the District of North Vancouver, École Braemar Elementary will be joined by 2 more elementary schools as part of the Kid Commute initiative.
The City of New Westminster schools will be announced soon!
Thank you to TransLink and our municipal partners for their generous support of this initiative.