Based on feedback from Solano County cities and schools, the Solano SR2S Program launched the SR2S Micro-Grant Pilot Program in fiscal year 2019-2020 to fund small-scale bike and pedestrian projects and programs that encourage walking and biking and improve safety around schools.
The Pilot Program funded 14 projects in 2020, including radar feedback signs, bike and scooter racks, safety signage and equipment, high visibility crosswalk improvements, bike corral fencing and scooter storage, and walking and biking incentives. (See projects below).
Building on the program’s success, SR2S has secured $130,000 in funding for Cycle 2 of the Micro-Grant Program. On September 8, 2021 the STA Board approved funding for 16 projects.
The SR2S Micro Grant Cycle 2 Awardees are:
Bike Vallejo: Bike safety signage and incentives City of Benicia: Crossing improvements at E 2nd Street and Riverhill/Augustine Dr. City of Vacaville: Radar feedback signs City of Vallejo: Crossing improvements at Dan Mini Elementary Cooper Elementary (Vacaville): Walk and bike program incentives Dan Mini Elementary (Vallejo): Walk and bike safety improvements David Weir Prep Academy (Fairfield): Walk and bike safety equipment and incentives DH White Elementary (Rio Vista): Walk and bike incentives
Dixon Montessori Charter School (Dixon): Bike safety equipment and scooter racks Fairmont Charter School (Vacaville): Safety equipment and incentives Knight Middle School (Dixon): Skateboard and scooter racks Loma Vista Envrionmental Science Acad. (Vallejo): Road striping and signage improvements Mare Island Health and Fitness Acad. (Vallejo): Bike racks, walk and bike incentives St. Basil’s School PAC (Vallejo): Sidewalk improvements Suisun City Youth Commission (Suisun City): Walk to School Day event and incentives UPNATM (Fairfield-Suisun): Bike safety equipment and incentives
Joe Henderson Elementary School PTO applied for funding to improve the crossing at Hastings and Sweetbrier. Funding was awarded for the purchase of a Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (RRFB), these warning lights aid in alerting drivers to the presence of pedestrians in the crosswalk. This project was completed in February 2021, concurrently with additional improvements as part of a larger Safe Routes to School Project. The additional improvements included widening the sidewalk north of the driveway, ADA curb ramps and accessibility.
Riverview Middle School received funding to construct a fenced bike corral to keep students’ bikes and scooters safe during the school day. (click on photo to view larger).
Students’ comments on the project: Blake – I always ride my bike. It’s a lot faster and cheaper and works better for my family. My parents are really busy. It’s an easier way for me to get to school on my own. It makes me feel safer putting my bike in there. I left my bike accidentally at school overnight last year and it was stolen. So I’m glad it will be locked up now. I may ride my skateboard now too.
Levi – I usually take the bus, but with coronavirus, it will be easier to take my long board or bike. I’m always worried about it being taken from school. The gated area will be locked. That’s nice.
Browns Valley Elementary PTO was awarded funding to purchase 4 scooter racks for students that ride to school. These racks were purchased in the Spring of 2021 and were installed a week prior to students returning to in person classes. Two racks were installed by the lower grade classrooms and two were installed by the upper grade classes. This placement allows students to ride to school and park their scooters close to their classrooms.
Ellie Steed, in the 2nd grade says, “Last year, if I rode my scooter I had to lay it on the ground by the bike racks. I like the little scooter racks because now all the second graders can park by our class and it’s easier to ride your scooter to school.”
Kairos Public Schools
Kairos Public Schools (Vacaville) received safety equipment for their existing drop-off an pick-up program including high visibility signage for crosswalks around the school. The school will be using incentives received for a new walking program and pedometers for use in PE classes.
Radar Feedback Signs
The City of Vacaville completed the installation of 5 Radar Feedback Signs at Browns Valley, Callison, and Cambridge Elementary schools in early August 2020. (click on photo to view larger)
Vaca Pena Middle School
Vaca Pena Middle School in Vacaville completed the installation of locking scooter/skateboard racks and bicycle tire pump, encouraging more students to ride to school. “With our ever changing world and families with challenging work schedules, now more than ever I believe that our students will be utilizing bikes, scooters and skateboards to attend school once we begin our in-person learning in the upcoming weeks. “ – Principal C. Moe
Sierra Vista K-8 School
Sierra Vista received walk and bike incentive items to support their Healthy Sierra Vista initiative when students return to campus “Creating a healthy environment for all the students at our school is exactly what we, as a PTC, are aiming to do.” – Sierra Vista K-8 PTC President
Dan Mini Elementary and Everest Academy received safety equipment for high traffic Drop-off and Pick-up times.
Dan Mini Elementary also received walking program incentives and bike safety equipment to help students get to school safely by skipping the car ride, these items included bike helmets, bike locks, and small bike repair kits.
A Walking School Bus is a group of children walking to or from school with an adult. Trained volunteers or school staff meet the children at a specific location and time and supervise them along the route. Parents are welcome to drop their child off at a Walking School Bus “stop” along the route or walk with their children and the group to school.
A Walk or Wheel (WOW) Day is an ongoing, school-wide event your school can schedule weekly or monthly to encourage students to walk or wheel (by bike, scooter, or skateboard) to school. Schools can market the event as “Walk or Wheel (WOW) Day”, “Walking Wednesday”, or “Fit Friday”. Whatever you call it, it’s all good!
These schools participate with weekly or monthly WOW programs.
A Bike Rodeo is a fun, active event for elementary students to learn biking and safety skills in a safe and comfortable environment. Safe Routes to School staff sets up various agility courses on school grounds for students to practice important skills necessary to ride a bike safely and confidently. Staff also inspects students’ bikes and makes sure their bike helmets fit them properly.
Kindergarten through 6th grade students must be able to ride a bike without assistance to participate. Students should bring their own bike and helmet to the Bike Rodeo, but bikes and helmets can be provided, if needed. Bike Rodeos last 1-2 hours depending on the number of participants. Schools are required to provide 6-10 volunteers to help the event run smoothly.
For more information or to schedule a Bike Rodeo at your school, contact the Safe Routes to School program at (707) 399-3222 or email@example.com.
The Bay Area Bike Mobile provides students with free hands-on bike repair at your school. The Bike Mobile staff shows students how to perform easy maintenance on their bikes, while fixing flat tires, adjusting bike seats and replacing worn brakes. The Bike Mobile staff is on site for 3 hours and fixes bikes on a first-come, first-served basis.
This year the SR2S Program received 198 entries from 18 schools in Solano County. Thank you to the schools and teachers that encouraged their students to participate in our 5th Annual Safe Routes to School Poster Contest.
Students in grades K-12 were asked to design a poster using one of the following safety messages:
Always wear a helmet when riding your bike or scooter.
Cross the street at the crosswalk.
Always make eye contact with drivers when crossing the street.
Look before your cross: left, right, left again.
Don’t talk or text on your phone when crossing the street (put those headphones away too).
The winners have been chosen and their artwork will be featured in a Safe Routes to School 2020 calendar! The First Place winner in each category will also receive a gift certificate to a local bike shop.
Kindergarten – 2nd Grade
First Place: Julia Miller, Cordelia Hills Elementary
Second Place: Travis Santiago, Sierra Vista K-8
Third Place: Lyla Stubbendorff, Foxboro Elementary
Fourth Place: Amaya Johnson, Foxboro Elementary
3rd – 5th Grade
First Place: Robert Miller, Cordelia Hills Elementary
Second Place: Keira Call, Robert Semple Elementary
Third Place: Jaimyah Jenkins, Crescent Elementary
Fourth Place: Emma Eastlund, Foxboro Elementary
6th – 8th Grade
First Place: Sarosh Addanki, Green Valley Middle School
Second Place: Grace Miller, Green Valley Middle School
Third Place: Corey Liew, Dan O Root Health & Wellness Academy
Fourth Place: Anika Lum, Grange Middle School
9th – 12th Grade
First Place: Lauren Miller, Visions in Education
Each May, students across Solano County strap on their helmets, hop on their bikes and pedal to school on National Bike to School Day, as part of National Bike Month. The Solano Safe Routes to School program sponsored the first event in 2013 and participation continues to grow. In 2022, 21 schools from all 7 school districts in all 7 cities in the county participated.
Each October, students throughout Solano County, the nation and the world are encouraged make the effort to get out of the car and walk to school on International Walk to School Day.
In years past, Walk to School Day has been a great success and positive experience for our school communities. Whether you walk from home, or meet-up with friends at a nearby park and walk from there – it all counts! To help make it as safe as possible we can provide suggestions to help you organize your event, incentives for participants, and assist you with any questions you may have.
Top 10 Bike Rides in Solano County – Remember to maintain physical distancing (6 feet) when travelling in the community and on trails. Check before you go – due to Covid 19 precautions, some Solano County Parks may be closed.
Top 10 Walks and Hikes in Solano County – Remember to maintain physical distancing (6 feet) when walking in the community and on Solano County trails.Check before you go – due to Covid 19 precautions some Solano County Parks may be closed.
CA Pedestrian and Bike Safety Curriculum (Grades 4-5) CA SR2S Technical Resource Center Includes lessons on the importance of physical activity(PE Focused), Health Benefits (Science Focused), Environmental Impact of Walking and Bicycling, Rules of the Road, Pedestrian Safety.
Safety isn’t the only reason to wear a helmet, it’s also the law in California. Youth under 18 years of age must wear a helmet when riding a bike. The Bike Helmet Fitting and Education program provides bike helmets to students with an economic need and teaches why it’s important to wear a helmet and other bike safety tips. Groups of 4-6 students are each properly fitted with a new helmet at their school (no more than 30 students per event).
To schedule a helmet fitting at your school, contact the Safe Routes to School Program at (707) 399-3222 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
In 2017, Solano Safe Routes to School (SR2S) launched the Youth Engagement Pilot Program to support high school aged youth in Solano County.
Since the SR2S Program has traditionally focused on supporting elementary school youth, this Youth Engagement Program was designed to:
increase high school youth leadership and involvement in Safe Routes to School activities countywide and;
engage in youth-led projects that can lead to sustainable solutions in improving active transportation and safety, reducing carbon emissions and/or addressing Safe Routes to School goals such as increasing walking, biking or physical activity.
Participating sites will be asked to engage in a YPAR (Youth-Led Participatory Action Research) or Photovoice Project following an easy-to-follow curriculum provided to them by SR2S. The SR2S team will work with participants to build capacity and skills for young people and their adult counterparts that will potentially increase youth-led activities and promotion of the Safe Routes to School program countywide.