MassDOT Celebrates Third Annual Safe Routes to School Award Ceremony
MassDOT, through the Massachusetts Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Program, celebrated the successes of SRTS partner schools and community champions at the Massachusetts State House. Over 100 award recipients were recognized at yesterday’s ceremony across four award categories. In addition, thirteen awards were given to recipients for their exemplary efforts in promoting safe routes initiatives.
“The Safe Routes to School Program is very important to MassDOT and the whole of Massachusetts,” said MassDOT Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack. “Through providing pedestrian and bicyclist trainings, to assessing safe routes allowing access to and from school, we are helping to shape safe transportation behaviors for students to carry with them for years to come.”
A program of MassDOT, the statewide SRTS program promotes annual flagship events such as Massachusetts Walk, Bike, and Roll to School Day and International Walk and Roll to School Day. Along with celebrating these event days, SRTS offers pedestrian and bicyclist training activities, as well as walk and bike assessments of the existing infrastructure. SRTS reaches out to schools and their local communities to offer one-on-one assistance to meet their specific needs, help to plan various customizable safety-focused activities, and provides additional resources to help facilitate student travel to a parent and student audience.
“The ultimate goal of this program is to give schools and communities the necessary tools for encouraging their students to get to and from school safely through active transportation, while also enjoying the benefits that this can bring,” said Massachusetts Highway Administrator Johnathan Gulliver. “I am honored to see the many local and statewide partnerships that continue to help us meet our programmatic goals.”
Over 100 partners were recognized during the ceremony. The following awards were presented to those who showed exemplary efforts:
Exemplary Program by Region Winners:
- Barnstable-West Barnstable Elementary School, Barnstable
- Cottage Street School, Sharon
- Josiah Quincy Elementary School, Boston
- Elm Street School, Gardner
- Memorial Elementary School, West Springfield
- Exemplary Program by Region Honorable Mentions:
- Nantucket Public Schools
- Lawrence W. Pingree Primary School, Weymouth
- William E. Russel School, Boston
- Millbury Street Elementary School, Grafton
- Bridge Street School, Northampton
- Community Collaboration Winner: Healthy Easton
- Community Collaboration Honorable Mention: Newburyport Livable Streets
The 2018 Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Superhero Award was given to the Tishler Family, in honor and memory of Nikki Tishler, MassDOT Safe Routes to School Coordinator. This award is given to the individual who has served as a true champion of SRTS over the past year, making the extra effort to ensure a successful and effective SRTS program in his/her community. Going forward, this award will be known as the Nikki Tishler Memorial Award.
The Massachusetts Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Program, sponsored by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation and with funds from the Federal Highway Administration, promotes safer routes for students to get to school by fostering partnerships between advocacy groups, law enforcement, education leaders, and public health departments. The Program currently serves 804 schools in 206 communities across the Commonwealth.
For more information, visit the Massachusetts Safe Routes to School website.