Parents are being
encouraged to walk their
children to school as part of a nationwide initiative to
improve health and fitness.
Walk once a Week was launched yesterday (Wednesday) at Dunipace Primary, one of 50 schools taking part during the summer term, by Living Streets Scotland.
Stepping out with pupils at the launch was Shona Robison, Minister for Sport and Commonwealth Games, along with walk to school mascot Strider.
The initiative by the charity, which supports the rights of pedestrians, aims to increase walking levels and cut traffic around schools.
Pilots have shown it is an easy way to build physical activity into a child’s day and teaches them vital road safety skills. Teachers report pupils are more alert and ready to learn in the classroom.
The Minister said: “There is no better time to launch the Walk once a Week initiative as we are currently in the midst of Physical Activity Awareness Week, which is providing encouragement to people across Scotland to be more active.
“Doing some form of physical activity every day can make a massive difference to a person’s health and fitness – and for children and parents walking to school instead of getting in the car is one of the easiest ways to do it.”
She added WoW was creating a lasting legacy of a healthy, active nation in the run-up to, and after, this summer’s Glasgow Commonwealth Games.
Robina McAnish, Dunipace Primary headteacher, said the school was delighted to be taking part. She said: “In our school, WoW is for everyone and that is pretty wow for lifestyles.
“The tracker database will provide useful information for analysis and a real context for mathematics, and the monthly target badges will be incentives.”
Keith Irving, head of Living Street Scotland, said: “This gets pupils active and can help schools and councils tackle the problems of congestion and pollution associated with high traffic levels during the school run.”
The initiative supports the nationwide workforce Fit in 14 campaign and is backed by the Scottish Government and Paths for All.