Dear parents, caregivers and community,
Thank you for celebrating International Walk + Roll to School Day with us this month. We had 25 schools register events and order incentives. It was a joy to see your photos and join events IRL! If you haven't shared your photos with us, please email them to us at email@example.com or tag us on social media: @PBOT Safe Routes to School on Facebook and @saferoutespdx on Instagram.
We invite you to honor Ruby Bridges Walk to School Day with us on November 17th. We've shared some history and resources below on this important day!
Safe Routes to School Team | Dana, Janis, Abra, Lale, Xao, Meaghan & Brittany
In this email:
- Honoring Ruby Bridges Walk to School Day on November 14th
- Travel with care - Daylight Savings ends Sunday, November 6th
- Job postings
Honoring Ruby Bridges Walk to School Day on November 14th
Safe Routes to School would like to honor Ruby Bridge’s act of courage, and elevate the important role she played in the civil rights movement just over 60 years ago.
Please work with your school staff if you'd like to help organize a walk in honor of Ruby Bridges for your school community. Incentives can be ordered here: https://bit.ly/3F9Ldhq. Order by November 7th to receive your items before November 14th!
In 1945 the US Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in Brown v. the Board of Education ended racial segregation in public schools. However, southern states continued to resist. Ruby spent kindergarten in a segregated classroom. In 1960 a federal court ordered Louisiana schools to desegregate. The school district created an entrance exam to see if African American students could handle being in an all-white school. Ruby and five other students passed the exam. The six students were to be sent to two different all-white schools. The school district delayed their start and Ruby’s first day of school was November 14, 1960. A few days before the start of school, the two African American students who were going to attend with Ruby, decided to stay in their home school. Ruby braved Frantz Elementary School on her own.
How Ruby Bridges Walk to School Day Began
In 2018, after learning about her story, a group of 5th graders in San Mateo County wanted to recognize Ruby Bridges' courage in showing up to school every day despite the terrible circumstances. San Mateo County put together a website full of resources including lesson plans, social media templates, and more. Here are a few suggested ones to start with:
- San Mateo County's resources website to share with your students
- Listen to Ruby talk about her courageous journey and events leading up to it on this podcast: Through My Eyes: Ruby Bridges on the Struggle for Racial Justice
Share Ruby’s Story
If you’d like to share Ruby’s story with your students, you can order her 1999 memoir, Through My Eyes, here. Click here to access The Power of Story, a catalog of diverse books for readers of all ages.
The Creative Company has given permission for SRTS practitioners to share their book Ruby Head High: Ruby Bridges’ First Day of School at no cost. You can print these pages for a storyboard walking activity, to share with students and schools, and more! The Creative Company does ask that you please tag them in any photos related to their use:
Learn more about Portland's Story
This is also an opportunity to learn and share about Portland's history of desegregation with your students and children. We encourage you to research about Portland's history with segregated neighborhoods, desegregation with school districts, and busing. Here are some recommended resources:
- Our Story; Portland Through an African American Lens (7-minute video on Desegregation in Portland)
- Racing to Change: Oregon’s Civil Rights Years (Virtual Exhibit Presented by Oregon Black Pioneers)
- Timeline of Oregon and U.S. Racial, Immigration and Education History (year 1900 starts on page 10)
- The Desegregation of Portland Public Schools (lesson plan for 8th-10th grade students)
Travel with care - Daylight Savings ends Sunday, November 6th
Clocks move back one hour on Sunday, November 6, which means people traveling in the early evening will experience darker conditions than before. Now is a good time do your part to travel with care.
Dark conditions are linked to increased crash risk, especially for pedestrians. Portland crash data show an uptick in pedestrian crashes in fall and winter months, peaking at an average of more than 250 pedestrian crashes each December.
People traveling on Portland streets can reduce the risk of getting hurt or hurting others by:
- Traveling at or below the speed limit,
- Always turning on headlights,
- Making eye contact,
- Avoiding distractions, and
- Doing your best to be visible by using reflective gear or safety lights when traveling outside of a motor vehicle.
Families, you can help your students be visible by adding reflective elements to backpacks and clothing. Reflective gear is first visible to people driving from 500 feet away compared to just 55 feet when wearing dark colors.
Vision Zero is Portland’s goal to eliminate traffic deaths and serious injuries. To make strides, PBOT is reducing travel speeds, adding protections for people walking and bicycling and advocating for a culture of shared responsibility. More information and materials are available to order online.
PBOT is recruiting for multiple positions:
1. Utility Worker II Position: No experience in construction or utility works is required. PBOT pay for you to get your Commercial Driver License. Once PBOT staff members have their CDL they’re eligible for a promotion. Even if you’re not looking for a job right now, consider applying. Over the next two years, PBOT will draw from this pool of candidates to fill future vacancies, so it’s important to get on the list now. Closes 10/31/2022. Job posting here.
2. Senior Community Engagement Coordinator: The Senior Community Engagement Coordinator acts as a leader, expert, and key consultant within the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) and externally with community partners and stakeholders, especially populations who are most affected by transportation disparities and historically underrepresented. Closes 11/14/2022. Job posting here.
3. Vision Zero Data Analyst: The Vision Zero Data Analyst will support and promote the development of Vision Zero policies, systems, programs and outreach to improve traffic safety and enhance safe systems throughout the City. This position focuses on traffic crash and other safety analysis, mapping, data visualization, and other bicycle, pedestrian and complete streets focused transportation planning and analysis. Closes 11/14/2022. Job posting here.