The Prevention and Early Intervention Department at the Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) has been awarded a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) for a countywide project to increase pedestrian and bicyclist safety.
The project’s goal is to help middle school youth develop attitudes that promote lifelong traffic safety values and build a foundation for making safe decisions when they become teen drivers. SCOE, working with Safety Center Incorporated and other community partners, will use the funding in an ongoing partnership with the California OTS to increase bicycle helmet compliance for youth, ages 5 to 18. SCOE has been an annual recipient of the grant since 2015.
This $175,000 grant will provide opportunities to help create and maintain a culture of traffic safety within the middle school population, their families, and their communities. The program includes virtual classroom education, presentations, and workshops, and provides bicycle helmets (including proper use and fitting) for students and families in need. The funding is provided by a grant from the California OTS through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
“Our goal is that education will change behaviors and make roads safer for students,” California OTS Director Barbara Rooney said. “This funding will help students develop good habits when biking or walking.”
Student leaders in the Club Live Program will implement projects throughout Sacramento County. Students will complete a photovoice project (representing their research with photographs), identify safety concerns in their school communities, and provide recommendations for change. They will also educate their peers and parents on the importance of bicycle helmet use and bicycle and pedestrian safety through virtual activities, contests, public service announcements, social media posts, and monthly parent/guardian newsletters. Participants will complete observational surveys before and after the project to measure its effectiveness.