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Transportation safety education programming

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A group of four young children on bicycles. They are stopped on the side of a street, wearing helmets, and smiling.
Pedestrian, bicycle and transportation safety education units curated by Portland Safe Routes to School.
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Elementary School: Pedestrian safety education

Bring pedestrian safety education to your students through a health or physical education (PE) setting! Safe Routes to School staff will provide free Train the Trainer education to get you started and feeling confident with skills and information.

How it works: Train the Trainer

Safe Routes to School staff provide initial training to teachers, then offer in-class support as teachers begin instructing students. Staff are available to observe teachers in class, offer feedback, and help respond to questions. 

Pedestrian safety education

The pedestrian safety education program uses PE games and movement to teach pedestrian and personal safety skills. It was developed in partnership with PE teachers and is aligned with Oregon Department of Education PE standards. 

Middle School: Bike and transportation safety education

Bring Traffic Safety Education to your students through a health or physical education setting! Safe Routes to School staff will provide free Train the Trainer education to get you started and feeling confident with skills and information.

How it works: Train the Trainer

Safe Routes to School staff provide initial training to teachers, then offer in-class support as teachers begin instructing students. Staff are available to observe teachers in class, offer feedback, and help respond to questions. 

Bike safety education

Everything you need to teach bike handling skills and road safety awareness in a classroom and outdoor setting. 

  • A fleet of bikes and helmets are available for use during the program. Availability may vary as the bikes rotate between schools across Portland. 
  • Original lessons were intended for middle school-aged students. 
  • Lessons are paired with Oregon Department of Education's Core Physical Education Standards. 

Transportation safety in the classroom

Two interactive multi-day units covering:

  • health and community benefits of active transportation
  • Oregon traffic safety laws
  • how to ride transit
  • assertive communication in public spaces.

Original lessons intended for middle school-aged students, and are paired with Oregon Department of Education's Core Health Standards and Performance Indicators. 

Ride leader training

Feel confident leading rides for small and large groups. A great option for schools wanting to coordinate family rides but aren't quite ready to offer Bike Safety Education programming.

High School: Transportation Academy

Safe Routes has expanded into high schools - jump on the bus and join us. Thanks to grants from Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) and Metro Safe Routes to School (SRTS) programs, Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is able to offer our Transportation Academy in Parkrose School District and Portland Public Schools (PPS), respectively. 

In 2022, PBOT SRTS staff started training Parkrose High School Elevate Oregon teacher-mentors to lead the Transportation Academy. Elevate Oregon is an organization that builds relationships with at-risk youth to promote education, self-reliance, and leadership with Parkrose students. In 2023, we started our second and final year of the grant.

In 2023, PBOT SRTS started working with Portland Public Schools teachers from Cleveland and McDaniel high schools to pilot our updated Transportation Academy.

How it works:

These partnerships encourage growth beyond the classroom and into students’ day-to-day lives. Topics covered in the Transportation Academy include:

  • Multimodal literacy - getting around Portland by walking, biking, rolling, taking transit, shared micromobility, and driver safety
  • Climate connections - effect of transportation on climate
  • Transportation equity - Portland transportation history 
  • Civic engagement - working with city government
  • Safe Systems – ways to address and mitigate risks in our transportation system

These educational efforts not only increase students’ knowledge of options to get around their neighborhoods and city, but are also designed to increase pedestrian, biker, and driver safety, with the goal of reducing fatal and serious crashes.

This Academy was highly informed by previous safe travel engagements with over 140 Portland Metro youth, in partnership with Metro Safe Routes to School, ODOT, and Dr. Autumn Shafer.

Safe travel engagements included:

  • Workshops at Parkrose High School, Alliance High School, and East Portland Community Center
  • Focus groups in all Portland Public School high school clusters, including East Multnomah County, Washington County and Clackamas County focus groups led by Metro partners

For more information, please reach out to us at saferoutes@portlandoregon.gov