Welcome to Cross County Connection's South Jersey Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Newsletter! Through a partnership with the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT), Cross County Connection assists schools, school districts and municipalities in South Jersey with developing fun and educational events and activities to enable and encourage children in grades K-8, including those with disabilities, to safely walk and bicycle to school. We also provide technical assistance with assessing the physical environment around schools and provide strategies to make it safer.

If your school, school district or community is interested in learning more about SRTS, contact Cross County Connection TMA at (856) 596-8228.
Safe Routes at Home: Your Weekly Source for Fun Ways
to be Active and Teach Your Kids Safe Walking Skills
Things Parents Say
Many parents are apprehensive about allowing their children to walk to school and often give several valid reasons why they have decided against allowing their children to do so.  
In this video on “ Things Parents Say ,” developed by NJ Safe Routes to School Resource Center in a partnership with the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT), provides an overview of the common answers that parents give when they are asked why do not let their kids walk to school.  
The video demonstrates that sometimes those reasons may be rooted in their own misconceptions. These parent opinions are juxtaposed by the sheer excitement and appreciation the children have for walking and rolling to school and why it is important to them. It also highlights many of the benefits children will gain if they walk to school.  

Test Out a Route and Get More Comfortable 
with Your Kids Walking to School  

During this time, while your children are out of school, it is important to keep them active and safe. Additionally, this can be a time to establish new norms with your children to help them understand how to walk safely to school and potentially give yourself some peace of mind that walking to school is more possible than you may think.  
Think about a logical and safe route to the school. Walk the route to school with your children as a break from being inside the house. Bring along a notebook and write down some observations about the route and its surroundings. Ask you children for their thoughts on their experiences.  
Here are some things you can do and consider during the walk:  
  • Map out your route. If you know, mark down where crossing guards are located. 
  • Along the way, mark down safety measures your children should look out for such as stop signs, marked crosswalks and traffic lights. Are some of these elements missing? Make note of them. Your town may appreciate you bringing it to their attention. 
  • Teach your children that they must cross the street where a crossing guard is present. In locations without a crossing guard, children must always cross at an intersection where there is a crosswalk.  
  • Not all crosswalks are marked. A crosswalk exists between two corners on opposite sides of the street even when there is one not painted. This is called an “unmarked crosswalk” and they are very common on neighborhood streets.  

  • It is important to tell your children that they should never dart out into the street. Teach your children that they must stop at the edge (or curb) of the street and then use their eyes to look left, right, and left again.  
  • Children must also use their ears to listen for vehicles that may be outside of visible distance. Ask them “What does an approaching car sound like?” 
  • Be sure to tell your children how important it is to make sure drivers can see them. Show them how to communicate with a driver nonverbally by making eye contact and waiting for the driver to wave them across. They should never assume a driver sees them and will stop. Only cross when the driver has come to a complete stop. 
  • On your way back home, test your child’s knowledge on what they have learned today. If you think they may need a little more practice, take the walk again. 

We hope this walk helps your children to be safe and makes you feel more comfortable with allowing your children to walk to school.  
Please share with Cross County Connection your maps, notes, photos and any thoughts from this exercise by contacting our Safe Routes to School Coordinator, Latifah Sunkett at  sunkett@driveless.com .  
Check back next week a new activity or lesson! 

Ronda R. Urkowitz 
Executive Director
(856) 596-8228

Latifah Sunkett
SRTS Coordinator
(856) 596-8228

SRTS Resources:


Communities can earn Sustainable
Jersey and Sustainable Jersey
Schools certification points by
participating in SRTS!

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Sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Transportation with funding 
from the Federal Highway Administration. The Federal Government and the NJDOT
assume no liability for the contents.