Maine Safe Routes to School Newsletter | March 2018 Newsletter
Become a Certified Safety Instructor
Grade 2
Do you know all you need to feel comfortable and safely ride a bike with traffic? Do you feel you know enough to teach your children how to ride cautiously and conspicuously while on their own? When you drive a car, are you confident on how to share the road with people on bikes?
The Smart Cycling program gives you the tips, tools, and techniques to confidently answer  YES to each question. Our classes are taught by certified League Cycling Instructors (LCI). 

This  FREE course is being offered in: 
Want to become a League Cycling Instructor?? 
LCIs are certified to teach the Smart Cycling classes to children as well as adults. Their goal is to help people feel more secure about getting on a bike, to create a mindset that bikes are treated as a vehicle, and to ensure that people on bikes know how to ride safely and legally. LCIs are also qualified to contract with the Bicycle Coalition of Maine for bike/ped safety instructor work at a rate of $30/hour.
Walking School Bus News

"The WSB is a fantastic program . . . when I first heard of it I figured "What the heck, it's only a half hour or so of my day." I thought it was some crazy sounding idea and the appeal to the children would soon decrease as soon as the novelty wore off . . . it has in fact, been just the opposite as it seems each semester - regardless of the weather - we have gained in popularity."

This quote from a volunteer walk leader is one of many that we received from a recent survey that we sent out to the 6 walking school bus programs (WSB) that we work with in Bangor, Portland, Norway and Lewiston. We wanted to find out what some of the WSB coordinators, volunteer walk leaders and parents of kids who participate thought and felt about the program. Read more of the Terrific Testimonials we received.

Each year, Walking School Bus programs across the country get kids active while getting them to and from school, providing numerous benefits. Yet, very little is known about what makes these programs successful. In partnership with the Safe Routes to School National Partnership, a research team is conducting an online survey to learn more about Walking School Bus (and Bike Train) best practices. 

Whether you currently coordinate a Walking School Bus program at a single school or at multiple schools, please help us learn more about your important work by completing this survey.  The information you provide will help support the growth of Walking School Bus programs across the U.S., and findings will be shared with you at the end of the study.

Those who are eligible and complete the survey will receive a $10-$25 e-gift card. The survey will take about 10-20 minutes to complete. 

The Bangor School Department and its three Walking School Bus programs were awarded the Bicycle Coalition of Maine's Public Service Excellence Award - awarded annually to public servant professionals who have provided outstanding service to the bicycle and pedestrian community in Maine. 
Training Opportunities:
Make Streets Safer
How to achieve "complete streets" in downtown streets is one of the hottest topics in roadway planning and design. But just what are complete streets, and why should we be thinking about them in Maine? How can we balance the needs of drivers with those of walkers and bicycle riders?

In partnership with the Maine CDC, Portland Area Comprehensive Transportation Systems and the Greater Portland Council of Governments, the Bicycle Coalition of Maine is offering two combined classroom and in-the-field pedestrian experiential trainings to municipal staff in southern Maine on strategies to improve bicycle and pedestrian conditions and safety in downtown areas. Town managers, planners, DPW staff, emergency services and other interested municipal staff are all invited to attend.

Both trainings will take place on April 11, 2018 in the large conference room at Greater Portland Council of Governments. Participants are invited to take just one, or both.   Please dress in clothing appropriate for the weather and light activity. If you choose to bring your own bicycle, please ensure it is in good repair and bring your helmet.

Each session is limited to 10 people. 
Registration Closes on April 6
A second round of trainings is planned for the Bangor region on June 20, 2018. Details TBA.

The Community Spokes Program is the Bicycle Coalition of Maine's effort to create a statewide network of bicycle and pedestrian advocates at the local level. We empower Mainers to become champions of better biking and walking through advocacy training, education, and ongoing technical support.

The next training will be held in May 2, 2018 in Skowhegan. 

Hosting three workshops this summer

These are small group (20 - 25), hands-on, multi-day workshops taught by local experts from the Portland Bureau of Transportation, Portland State University, Alta Planning + Design, Toole Design Group, Nelson\Nygaard, Washington County, and more.

A limited number of scholarships are available to help offset the costs of travel and registration. Scholarship applications will be accepted on a rolling basis for the June faculty workshop, so apply early! Scholarship applications for the two August workshops are due by Friday, April 6.
We're here to help you strategize, answer questions, and support your community as you make plans for walk and bike activities this school year!
The Maine Safe Routes to School Team

In This Edition

Darcy Whittemore
Education Program Manager

Erik daSilva
Education Program Coordinator 

Shannon Belt
Education & Outreach Coordinator (Greater Portland)
Patrick Adams
MaineDOT Bicycle and Pedestrian Program Manager

Resources, Funding, & Timely Opportunities

Riding for Focus Grant
Support your middle school with everything needed to get students on bikes and riding.
Rolling Deadline

Bike Swap Time!
The Bicycle Coalition of Maine's Great Maine Bike Swap offers a great way to buy and sell quality used bicycles.
April 22, Portland

Wilderness 1st Aid
CBC is partnering with NOLS Wilderness Medicine to teach you the wilderness medicine skills you need to recreate with confidence in the backcountry.
May 12-13, Biddeford

Upcoming Webinars
Apr 3, 1pm
Bike safety rodeos are popular community events that actually get kids riding and they are a great complement to other Bike/Ped Safety Education Programs.
Apr 25, 3:30pm
The course will give you the tools to help your friends, family, students, co-workers, and community ride and walk more safely.

What We're Reading

Teach your students to travel safely!  
The Maine SRTS Program  offers free bicycle & pedestrian safety education to schools, rec programs, and other youth organizations. The training covers 8 key points for young pedestrians and bicycle drivers. Adult education is also available.  
Contact Erik daSilva with questions.