Walk to School Day a success

West Mercer Elementary students cross SE 40th St at Homestead Field during International Walk To School Day last Wednesday

West Mercer Elementary students cross SE 40th St at Homestead Field during International Walk To School Day last Wednesday

Mercer Island celebrated International Walk to School Day last Wednesday, Oct. 8 with all three elementary schools participating.

The event, which saw participation from hundreds of students across the Island, was a success, according to parents involved.

Children were encouraged to walk, bike or bus to school. According to Marlo Isaac, a member of Island Park’s Safe Routes to School Committee, the initiative has three goals: improve physical fitness among students, help the environment and build community.

“It’s a great way to build a stronger sense of neighborhood,” she said, adding that parents are chaperoning groups of children to walk to school together.

To ensure safety, a number of neon flags and caution signs were posted along school routes. Some students walked as far as two miles to make their point. Others carried home-made signs promoting the event. Students who live too far from school to walk were encouraged to take the bus instead of riding in a car with their parents.

Efforts to encourage healthy alternatives to school will continue all year long. West Mercer has the Healthy Pups program and Lakeridge has the Healthy Ways to School program.

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