In 1970s Swarthmore, there was no school busing within the borough, only from Rutledge to Swarthmore Elementary (the current CADES building) and High School (the current Swarthmore Rutledge School building). Now busing is provided for the vast majority of SRS students. This results in added costs for the school district, added air pollution (including CO2 emissions), and decreased physical activity for the children. And for what benefit? Safety claims are highly dubious, as this had not been a problem prior to the busing expansion (when there were far fewer stop signs and other traffic control features in Swarthmore).
aFewSteps is working to promote "walking school buses" (WSBs) as an alternative, particularly in neighborhoods close to the schools and without dangerous traffic conditions, in the hopes that some school bus routes can ultimately be eliminated. WSBs are groups of students along the same walking route to school who walk together under the supervision of one or more parents. It is a time-tested strategy to promote safe walks to and from school, one that has been employed in the district before. Working with home and school associations, principals, and school district leadership, aFewSteps aims to make WSBs the norm and, where it's deemed safe, eliminate bus routes.
When picking a route, answer these four questions: