Safe Routes to School

Safe Routes to School

Safe Routes to School (SRTS) is an international movement to enable and encourage students to safely walk and bike to and from school and in daily life. SRTS programs are the result of parents, schools, communities and government joining forces to improve the health and safety of our children, our future leaders.

SRTS programs focus on the "5E's":

  1. Education efforts to teach pedestrian and bicycle safety skills
  2. Encouragement activities to build interest and enthusiasm
  3. Enforcement measures to address safety issues
  4. Engineering solutions to maintain traffic control devices and physical infrastructure
  5. Evaluation methods to monitor impact and identify areas for improvement and growth


Northeast Iowa is home to the state's first, rural, regional SRTS program, which serves over 10,000 K-8th students in Allamakee, Chickasaw, Clayton, Fayette, Howard and Winneshiek Counties. The Northeast Iowa SRTS Program, managed by UERPC partners with the Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative to increase physical activity among students and advocate for safe community routes in many ways:

  • Walking and Biking School Bus. A fun, safe and active way for students to travel to school with responsible supervisors.
  • Remote Drop-off. This is a variation of a Walking School Bus. Students who live far from the school can be dropped off at a location away from school grounds to walk the remaining trip to school.
  • Bike Rodeo.  A Bike Rodeo is a popular and fun event providing students with the knowledge, skills and practice for becoming smart, safe bike riders and pedestrians.
  • Mileage Club. Students earn rewards by walking a certain number of laps around a track, gym or school hallway. It can take place at gym class, recess or an after-school club.
  • SRTS Community Coalitions. School and community advocates join forces to build SRTS efforts and increase safety measures locally.
  • Community Walks. An active way for families to connect with others and explore their community.


Children feel better when they are active.  They are hardwired to move.  Their bodies need it, and their brains need it.

In today's world, however, our kids are not moving enough.  As a society, we have created a culture of convenience at the expense of our health, and no one suffers more than our kids.  This culture of convenience is the reason why today's generation of children is projected to live shorter life spans than their parents.  This is unacceptable.

By creating more opportunities for children to be physically active on a daily basis, we CAN make things better.  One of the best ways to do this is through supporting SRTS.  While SRTS programs are geared toward students and schools, it's really the community as a whole that benefits.  When routes to school and other community locations are safe and accessible for children, they are safe and accessible FOR EVERYONE because we are all pedestrians at some point during the day.

SRTS is the answer to creating a better world for our children, our school, our communities and ourselves.  Join the SRTS effort today by contacting Ashley Christensen or April Bril at 563-382-6171 or achristensen@uerpc.org / abril@uerpc.org.

"I am way too busy - but I enjoy this, and love the kids!  If it were any other time of day I could not make it work.  I am not an "earlybird" by any means, but I have really enjoyed this."
~Volunteer for morning Walking School Bus in West Union

"This was so well publicized and ran. My entire family enjoyed ourselves during the event and the kids were so excited to get practice on their big-boy bikes! I hope you continue doing it."
~Parent who attended the North Fayette Valley Bike Rodeo


News Headlines

Check out these upcoming events in and around Riceville on May 5th!

Posted: Thu, April 26, 2018

Check out these events happening in and around Riceville on May 5th!

1)  IronHorse Half-Marathon, 10K & 5K Race - first USTAF Certified and Sanctioned race of its kind in our area and it is being run nearly exclusively on the Wapsi-Great Western Line (WGWL) Trail - Iowa's first interstate connecting trail with Minnesota. 

2) WGWL Trail's Southern Branch Grand Opening with five Celebration Stations to enjoy as enthusiasts traverse the new section of trail.

To learn more, check out the WGWL Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/wgwltrail/

... [ Read More ]

NEIRHTF is now Accepting Applications

Posted: Tue, April 24, 2018

NEIRHTF ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS

The Northeast Iowa Regional Housing Trust Fund (NEIRHTF) is accepting applications for housing rehabilitationimprovement projects.  Applicants can be low-moderate income homeowners, landlord/for-profit organizations or non-profit organizations to promote and create affordable housing activities.  All applicants must be in one of the four counties of Allamakee, Clayton, Fayette, Howard, and Winneshiek. Eligible projects include rehabilitation and repair of existing housing, including, but not limited to: Roofs, windows, siding, plumbing electrical, energy efficiency, lead paint issues, and handicap accessibility.

For more information on the NEIRHTF or to see if there is funding in your area, please contact Upper Explorerland RPC, at 563-864-7551 ext. 101 for Sarah Snitker.  You can also obtain an application online at www.uerpc.org, Housing, Northeast Iowa Housing Trust Fund.

This institution is an Equal Opportunity Provider.

Esta institución es un Proveedor de Igual Oportunidad

... [ Read More ]

UERPC April Newsletter

Posted: Mon, April 16, 2018

Some of the headlines you can read about this month include:

  • Spring Walking School Bus Season is here!
  • Board Member Spotlight D. Warren Fisk
  • Monthly Workshops at IowaWORKS in Decorah
  • Northeast Iowa Farmer's Markets
  • Walk-on Waukon
  • Walk More Connect More
  • Solar Energy for Non-Taxable Entities Workshop
  • Selling Essentials for Iowa Businesses
  • Upcoming Allamakee County Housing Study Meetings
  • Jes Wegner Recognized for Physical Activity Efforts in Fayette County
  • Don't forget Mother's Day - Sunday, May 13th!
... [ Read More ]

UERPC March Newsletter

Posted: Mon, March 19, 2018

Some of the headlines you can read about this month include:

  • ICOG Legislative Breakfast
  • Upcoming Events
  • Healthy kids and families live 5-2-1-0
  • IowaWORKS to host "Real Colors" workshop
  • Iowa Association of Councils of Governements Staff Training
  • Winter Marathon Challenge Receives Positive Feedback from Participants
  • Luther College Job Fair a success
  • NEIRHTF has funding available
  • UERPC offices will be closed Friday, March 30th for Good Friday
... [ Read More ]
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