Published: 12:21, 09 June 2016
Fifty primary schools from across the county which are dedicated to KM Walk to School initiatives and pupils’ wellbeing have received Green Travel Mark Awards.
The schools from Kent, Medway and Bexley are taking part in the Walk on Wednesday (WOW), Active Bug or Green Footsteps schemes organised by the KM Group’s charity department as part of the KM Walk to School campaign.
The campaign encourages families to leave the car at home and get to school under their own steam giving pupils a healthy start to the day and improving safety at the school gate.
Representatives from the award winning schools attended a certificate presentation at the Maiden’s Tower of Leeds Castle, Maidstone. They were commended by KM Walk to School supporters from Kent County Council (KCC), Medway Council, Ashford Borough Council, Three R’s Teacher Recruitment, Mini Babybel, Countrystyle Recycling, Gallagher Aggregates, Orbit South, Golding Homes and Leeds Castle.
Jonathan Bassett, Head Teacher at St Mark’s Primary School in Aylesford, said: “The KM Walk to School scheme makes such a difference to our children as they walk through the door. Whether they are walking, scooting or cycling, they arrive to school enthused and ready for learning, and thinking about the route into school gives them a further stake in their village too.”
Green Travel Mark Awards can be earned at platinum, gold, silver and bronze levels with additional recognition for schools that provide a walking bus service.
To receive the platinum level award schools have to make a three-year commitment to green travel. One such school to achieve this honour is Walderslade Primary School, Medway.
Patrick Burgess, Governor at Walderslade, said: “Walking to school is very important for our pupils and area because our premises is situated on a very busy road which suffers from heavy congestion. By easing the volume of school run journeys helps to not only make our school and surroundings safer for pupils, but also greener. Educating pupils about the importance of the environment and what we can do to protect it is a high priority.”
Last academic year, KM Walk to School schemes helped to remove more than a quarter million vehicles from Kent, Medway and Bexley’s roads. The services also saw a reduction in harmful carbon dioxide emissions equivalent to 10 times the weight of Big Ben.
Simon Dolby, chief executive of KM Walk to School, said: “Traffic congestion is a serious problem at peak school run times. Our roads are busy, unpredictable and largely unsafe. We believe that walking to school is extremely beneficial for young people as it not only provides exercise and helps remove problematic vehicles, but also teaches vital road safety skills and increases awareness.”
He added: “We are extremely proud of our devoted schools which have been awarded their Green Travel Mark. They are helping to promote a healthier, active lifestyle for students, as well as engaging with their local communities.”
KM Walk to School operates green travel initiatives for schools including parent-led walking buses, Walk on Wednesday (WOW) / Super WOW, Active Bug and Green Footsteps. The campaign are supported by Specsavers, Golding Homes, Eurostar, Three R’s Teacher Recruitment, Countrystle Recycling, Orbit South, Mini Babybel, Kent County Council, Medway Council and Bexley Council.
To register your interest in a scheme, visit www.kmwalktoschool.co.uk, or contact the KM Charity Team on 0844 264 0291
Joy Lane Primary School, Canterbury; Langafel CE Primary School, Longfield; St Francis Catholic Primary School, Maidstone; Walderslade Primary School, Medway; Minister CE Primary School, Thanet; Goudhurst & Kilndown CEP School, Tunbridge Wells
Charing C of E Primary School, Ashford; John Mayne CE Primary School, Ashford; Shears Green Infant School, Gravesham; New Ash Green Primary School, Dartford; Archbishop Courtenay Primary School; Maidstone, Kingswood Primary School, Maidstone; Molehill Academy, Maidstone; Park Way Primary School; Maidstone, Senacre Wood Primary School, Maidstone; Ulcombe Primary School, Maidstone, Lyminge C of E Primary School, Shepway; Bapchild & Tonge Primary School, Swale; Minister-in-Sheppey Primary, Swale; St Peter’s Catholic Primary School (Sittingbourne), Swale; Tunstall CE Primary School, Swale; St Mildred’s Primary & Infant School, Thanet; Ightam Primary School, Tonbridge; St Mark’s CE Primary School, Tonbridge
Hoo St werburgh Primary School, Medway; Richmond Academy, Swale; St Edward’s Catholic Primary School, Swale; Priory Infant School, Thanet
Smarden Primary School, Ashford; Regis Manor Primary School, Swale; Thistle Hill Academy, Swale
St Mary’s Catholic Primary School, Medway
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