'Walking School Bus' on Adamsville Path Considered
Bridgewater-Raritan district is working with RideWise for walking alternatives.
Despite concerns from parents about having the students walk on their own from the Mt. Pleasant Villas complex to Adamsville Primary School on a newly constructed path, the district says it is so far working.
And ideas are being thrown around to take this to the next level.
Superintendent of Schools Michael Schilder said at Tuesday’s board of education meeting, that he walked the path three times, and cleared up a few issues before school started.
“There was some brush that wasn’t attractive and needed to be cleaned up,” he said. “But I find the path very safe and very convenient.”
The path was initially built by the township through a grant in an effort to eliminate some of the hazardous busing.
But parents have expressed concerns about the path, saying it is too far for the younger students to walk.
The district is hoping to experiment with other similar methods of getting to school to encourage more walking each day.
Schilder said the district has been meeting with RideWise, a Somerset County organization that promotes sustainable travel alternatives.
“We are talking about proper safety and working together,” he said. “The organization encourages kids to walk for health benefits.”
For example, Schilder said, they are looking into the possibility of creating a “Walking School Bus” for students at Adamsville Primary, particularly with the new path.
“It organizes parents and students to walk together in groups,” he said. “They go to different houses and pick people up.”
Schilder said there will be information about the program at Adamsville’s back-to-school night, in addition to a parent meeting Sept. 19 for those interested in being part.
Board of education president Evan Lerner asked whether this idea of the walking school bus will be made available to the other schools in the district.
“It sounds like a good idea,” he said.
Business administrator Peter Starrs said it’s not in the cards yet.
“If it catches on, I’m sure we will make it available to other schools,” he said.
What do you think, Bridgewater? Would a walking school bus method make it safer and easier to do the walk to school every day?