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School Travel Plans

The overall aim of School Travel Plans is to reduce car use for school journeys or keep it at low levels in schools expecting higher numbers of pupils over coming years. The latter point is particularly pertinent in Merton; as to meet demand for primary school places a primary schools expansion programme is ongoing.

Active travel campaigns and STAR (School Travel Accredited and Recognised) accreditation work to reduce car use and increase walking, cycling and using public transport.

Aims

  • Significantly reduce the number of car trips on journeys to and from school.
  • Remove the barriers, both perceived and actual, to walking, cycling and using public transport for school journeys.
  • Increase the number of young people and adults choosing ‘active travel ‘ options over that of the car.
  • Increase understanding among whole school communities of the travel options that are available to them.

Benefits of having a School Travel Plan

A School Travel Plan can result in:

  • Less cars and congestion around the school site.
  • Healthier and more active pupils, families and staff.
  • Less pollution around the school.
  • Safer walking and cycling routes around the school.
  • Improved school grounds with provision for bicycle storage (where possible)

The School Travel Plan Process

STAR (School Travel Accredited and Recognised) is a strategic framework that encourages and rewards schools to adopt safer and active travel behaviour. The STAR accreditation recognises and rewards schools at one of 3 levels; sustainable, higher and outstanding.

STAR accreditation is an achievement in itself but it also contributes to other key success indicators within the school e.g. Ofsted and the School Implementation Plan. Participation in STAR is also an important building block towards achieving other accreditations and standards such as Healthy Schools, Eco –Schools and Sustainable Schools.

Each school in Merton has a School Travel Plan Champion. They are responsible for producing their school’s travel plan in conjunction with the borough’s School Travel Plan Advisor.

School Travel Plans are completed online via the TfL STARS website. Training on how to use this website is provided annually in March for all schools in Merton. This training is FREE for all School Travel Plan Champions. However training on an ad hoc basis in school is also available. This can be arranged by contacting the School Travel Plan Advisor.

Apart from the environmental and health benefits of having an accredited School Travel Plan, schools also benefit by:

  • Being invited to the annual TfL STARS accreditation training workshop.
  • Being invited to the annual Merton School Travel Plan training workshop.
  • Participating in promoting walking with the WOW (Walk Once A Week) scheme, whereby pupils receive badges when they have walked at least once a week for a month.
  • Being invited to participate in the Walk To School Week activities in May.
  • Being able to apply for FREE bicycle storage for their school.
  • Assistance in setting up walking buses.
  • FREE theatre in education performances e.g. Arrive Alive for Year 6, Around The Corner for Year 2 and The Riot Act for Year 7.
  • Information on competitions run by TfL and Living Streets e.g. annual badge design.
  • Participating in the annual Debra the Zebra calendar competition.

If you would like any more information on any aspect of School Travel Plans please contact Merton’s School Travel Plan Advisor: on 020 8545 3872 or via email at future.merton@merton.gov.uk

See also

Safer routes to schools

This page was last updated on Friday 20 February 2015

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