There’s no time like back to school to get the whole family actively riding in Atlanta’s neighborhoods and along bike paths. We honor this exciting time with some information about our bike safety education programs, tips on riding safely, and a request for support of our expanding Shifting Gears program.
Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Meria Carstarphen with Bike Champion Jimmy Tyler, student, and parent at Dunbar Elementary open house. 08/08/2019
Through a partnership with Atlanta Public Schools, we are preparing the next generation of bike commuters. Seventeen Atlanta elementary schools are ready to adopt the second-grade bike safety curriculum from our popular Shifting Gears program.
Shifting Gears is offered in schools’ physical education classes and teaches children how to ride bikes skillfully and safely. Students also learn how to read street signs, communicate with other road users, conduct a basic "ABC-Quick check" (air, brakes, chain and quick release), and fit their helmets.
Since the launch of Shifting Gears in Atlanta Public Schools, we’ve successfully taught over 800 students the skills needed to experience the joy of riding a bike safely.
With the Shifting Gears program only available in a limited number of schools, we’re also teaching adults to maximize our impact and reach more kids and teens in the community. A great way for adults to learn bike safety and brush up on new skills is to attend one of our fun and popular free bike classes. By ensuring parents and other adults have the skills needed to ride safely and with confidence, they can pass the knowledge they’ve received on to other kids and teens.
Top 7 Tips for Back to School Biking
Remember and practice these skills during back to school and beyond so your kids and teens make safety a priority when they’re out biking.
- Wear a helmet
- Look “left-right-left” when walking and biking across intersections or driveways
- Use your hand turning signals
- Lock your bike up when you get to your destination whether it be school, work, at the MARTA station, or outside the store or business you’re visiting
- Tie your shoes tight and don’t wear clothes with loose straps
- Ride with friends or with family members whenever possible - whether riding on a bike path or practicing riding on neighborhood city streets
- Put on sunscreen and bring lots of drinking water - while the kids are going back to school already, it’s still summer out there!
Whether you’re considering allowing your kids and teens to bike to school or encouraging them to add biking to their school commute, remember to lead by example and practice these seven tips when you’re out biking. Your support allows us to offer education programs that help kids, teens, and parents enjoy Atlanta by bike. Please donate today to help us educate more people about bike safety and provide additional resources to overcome barriers to biking.