Policy change at the local level impacts the day-to-day experiences of our city’s residents. A major focus of our 2021 draft Board of Education Policy Agenda is for Atlanta Public Schools (APS) to ensure students have safe, convenient options to travel to and from school, and to help all children become more physically active by implementing proven strategies that promote walking, rolling, and riding transit to and from school.
The Atlanta Bicycle Coalition 2021 Board of Education Policy Agenda (currently still in draft form) recommends the following to make it possible for kids to get to and from school on foot, bike, transit, and other forms of sustainable transportation:
Atlanta Public Schools requires travel plans specific to each school with the goal of increasing families' use of sustainable transportation.
Atlanta Public Schools adds sustainable transportation education to its curriculum for all students.
Atlanta Board of Education advocates for youth and family fares for transit.
As an Atlanta resident, you can help actualize APS students’ health and safety outcomes by serving on a school government team (GO Team) to advocate for policies that help our students flourish — such as school-wide active and sustainable transportation policy adoption — regardless of whether you are a parent of an APS student.
What is a GO Team? According to Atlanta Public Schools:
"Did you know that more than 700 parents, educators, and community members are actively governing each of our schools via GO Teams? That’s right! At Atlanta Public Schools, Local School Governance Teams (GO Teams) represent each school and have decision-making authority over the school’s strategic plan, budget approval, school-based solution flexibility requests, and more."
Who can serve on a GO Team? Each school's team includes nine voting members — three elected parents/guardians, three elected instructional staff, two appointed community members, one appointed swing seat, and one appointed student (high school only), and the school’s principal. Parents must declare GO Team candidacy and community members must declare interest in participating. Applications for candidates are open until Sunday, February 28th and campus-based elections are held in April.
Each GO Team will fulfill responsibilities outlined in the GO Teams handbook. The team’s responsibilities most aligned with the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition’s 2021 Board of Education Policy agenda include:
- Develop innovative ideas for school-level flexibility through the School-Based Solutions process;
Policy Agenda alignment: Atlanta Board of Education advocates for youth and family fares for transit.
- Provide input into school-based curriculum selection and accompanying instructional materials;
Policy Agenda alignment: Atlanta Public Schools adds sustainable transportation education to its curriculum for all students.
- Make suggestions regarding school operations decisions that support the school strategic plan;
Policy Agenda alignment: Atlanta Public Schools requires travel plans specific to each school with the goal of increasing families' use of sustainable transportation.
GO Teams provide a direct avenue for community members to positively impact young Atlantans’ lives — we hope some of our advocates for safe, sustainable, and equitable transportation will consider getting involved!
|Parents: Declare GO Teams Candidacy by February 28|
|Community Members: Declare GO Teams Interest by February 28|
Photo from Atlanta Bicycle Coalition's Shifting Gears class at Benteen Elementary