Walk and Bike to School Day this past October was a huge success – the weather was perfect and everyone was able to enjoy the event. Participation this year increased with 128 Arlington Public School (APS) employees, representing 22 schools and sites throughout Arlington. For a few APS employees, Bike to School Day is actually every day.
Staff Bike Clubs
Yorktown High School physics teacher, Aaron Schuetz, has been biking to school for many years and he’s not the only teacher who does. This year, Aaron and his colleagues formed a staff bike club called the Cycle Riders of APS, Yorktown Originals. The club has about a dozen members who range from experienced to just getting started and includes staff from different departments.
The Cycle Riders have already gone on a few bike rides together and have more planned. Aaron says that getting to know colleagues from different departments is the best part, which has a “net positive impact on the school climate.” These teachers are not just staying healthy and helping the environment, they are building community at Yorktown.
Electric Bike Commutes
Extended Day educator, Amelva Flores, uses her electric bicycle every day to commute to Ashlawn Elementary School. Since replacing her regular bike with the ebike last year, she’s reduced the amount of time it takes to get to work. The electric assist helps her tackle the rolling hills around Ashlawn. Now she has a consistent commute time and always has priority parking right in front of the school.
Amelva points out that she still needs to pedal the bike, but is able to regulate the amount of extra power when she needs it. She says, “I encourage everyone to try bike commuting if you can. If I can do it, you can too!”
Benefits of Biking to Work
Elena Butterfield, a teacher at Kenmore Middle School, has been biking to work for over four years, four miles each way. She says, “Biking wakes me up, gives me the chance to walk and to observe wild life.”
Emmet Conroy, assistant principal at Arlington Community High School, bikes to school about three times a week, sometimes in a suit and tie.
Oakridge Elementary School assistant principal Rebecca Irwin Kennedy bikes an impressive 15 miles each way on the days she bikes.
Change the Way You Commute
Biking to school is just one way APS employees get to work and one of many transportation choices available to them. Knowing how many staff bike or walk to work is a good way to track Champions activities too as it can help your school level up and earn Achievement Awards.
For more information on transportation options and implementing programs and benefits, contact us here. Also, download our guide to implementing bike benefits and SmartBenefits for your staff.
Photo Credits: Aaron Schuetz, Yorktown High School; Elizabeth Denton, ATP