Getting to St Michael’s actively
Factoring in how your child/ren will be traveling to school is an important thing to consider. At St Michael’s we encourage children to travel actively by walking, cycling and scooting to school for all or a part of their journey. St Michael’s is a proud School Street school and works closely with local residents and the extended school community to make this program a success.
Benefits of active travel
Research shows that active travel to school makes children more alert and ready to face the school day than if they had arrived in a car. Walking, cycling or scooting to school wakes up their mind and body. It aids concentration and can support a better night’s sleep.
Physical activity can also encourage healthy growth and development, maintain a healthy weight and reduce anxiety and stress. It can improve muscle strength, endurance and flexibility in children and adolescents.
Active travel helps to connect people more with their local community and to develop valuable life skills such as road safety and cycle and scooter skills which they will use throughout their lives. Fewer families traveling to school by car will reduce congestion and help to improve air quality outside the school gates, making a safer and more pleasant environment for all to enjoy.
For more information of the benefits of active travel see here - https://www.sustrans.org.uk/our-blog/get-active/2019/everyday-walking-and-cycling/9-reasons-to-cycle-scoot-or-walk-the-school-run/
Park and stride
St Michael’s School have an arrangement with BCP Council where parents / caregivers / guardians who are not able to actively travel from home, are able to purchase a parking permit for the carpark at West Hill car park. This permit can be used at pick up and drop off times to support parking and striding to school. The cost of the 2022 permit is £15. It can be purchased here - https://www.bcpcouncil.gov.uk/Parking/Apply-for-or-renew-parking-permits/Bournemouth-parking-permits/Yearly-or-half-yearly-car-park-permits-in-the-Bournemouth-area.aspx
A School Street is where the road outside a school is closed to motor vehicles for a short period at the beginning and end of the school day. Parents and carers are asked to either walk, scoot or cycle with their children to school, or to park a little further away and walk the last few minutes of the journey. Somerville Road is closed between 8.00am - 9.00am and 2.15pm – 3.30pm and each school day via a timed Traffic Order. Our friendly stewards will be present to welcome families arriving at the School Street on foot, scooter or bicycle.
Blue Badge holders and residents (and some other exemptions) will be allowed through in their vehicle if required. If you are exempt you should aim to avoid travelling in and out of the School Street during the restrict times, where possible. However, if you need to enter the School Street in your motorised vehicle you should approach the closure point and speak to a steward to gain access. The steward will move the barrier aside and allow the vehicle to move through the road at walking pace (approx. 5mph)
The School Street is currently a trial for a minimum of six months. The Traffic Order will be operational until at least the end of the 2021/22 school year, and will hopefully be extended into September and beyond.
For more information on BCP School Streets visit - www.bcpcouncil.gov.uk/schoolstreets
Volunteering for your School Street
On a daily basis the School Street will be operated by volunteer stewards.
We are looking for organised, enthusiastic communicators, who can spare some time during the school run, to become School Streets volunteers. Whether you can commit to helping two hours a day five days a week, or just one hour once a week, the support of volunteers is vital to the success of School Streets. *We can offer free places in our breakfast or afterschool club to parents or careers on the days you volunteer. These will need to be booked in advance.*
If you would like to help create safer places for children, make a difference to the health and wellbeing of young people at St Michael’s and reduce congestion and pollution around schools, please sign up here.
You will receive training from Sustrans, the sustainable transport charity with extensive experience running School Streets.
Bike and scooter parking at school
We have a mix of bike and scooter parking available at school and encourage locks to be used when using the shelters. The shelters are inside the school grounds and are easily accessible at the start and end of the school day.
Support with walking, wheeling, cycling and scooting to school
To help you plan your active journey to school, BCP have created a few maps that will help your plan your journey.
Also see some top tips on walking and cycling with your children to school – https://www.sustrans.org.uk/our-blog/get-active/?location=null&theme=Children+and+families&p=1
St Michael’s works closely with Sustrans, the charity that makes it easier for people to walk and cycle. We are a Bike it Plus school which means that we have a dedicated officer to help us with all things that are active travel related. Throughout the school year there will be a number of activities that you can get involved in, these could include – learn to ride, bike and scooter skills sessions, and Year 6 transition routes and bike Dr visits.
Make sure your child(ren)’s cycle is in good working order by undertaking a simple M check - https://www.sustrans.org.uk/our-blog/get-active/2019/everyday-walking-and-cycling/the-m-check-for-your-bike-in-11-steps/ or an L check for a scooter - https://youtu.be/hwQL_iorrAg