The Active School Travel Programme is an exciting initiative for schools in Northern Ireland that want to see more of their pupils choosing an active and healthy journey to school.
Active School Travel Officer, Dave Wiggins, pictured with pupils from Bocombra Primary School in Portadown. Credit: Brian Morrison
Increasing the number of children who regularly walk, cycle or scoot to school has numerous benefits including:
- increased physical activity levels resulting in improved health and wellbeing
- reduced congestion and pollution around schools
- improved academic performance and attendance rates
- increased road safety awareness
- increased confidence, self-esteem, and independence for young people.
This initiative provides schools with a planned programme of activities throughout the year, both in and out of the classroom.
You'll also get direct hands-on support from a dedicated Sustrans Active Travel Officer.
The fundamental aim of the programme is to provide schools with the skills and knowledge to get more children walking, cycling and scooting as their main mode of transport to school.
More children active on the school run
At the end of the 2022-23 school year, the number of children travelling actively to school at participating schools increased from 30% to 42%.
At the same time, the number of pupils being driven to school fell from 60% to 47%.
After one year in the programme, the number of children completing physical activity for at least 60 minutes each day increased from 29% to 46%.
Take a look at the 2022-23 Summary Report to find out more about how the Active School Travel Programme is successfully working to increase the number of children walking, wheeling and cycling to school in Northern Ireland.
How your school can join the Active School Travel Programme
Recruitment for the 2023-24 school year is now closed.
All being well, we hope to be recruiting schools for the 2024-25 school year next year.
In the meantime, you can email schoolsNI@sustrans.org.uk with an expression of interest to ensure you receive notification when recruitment opens again.
Download the latest edition of the Active School Travel Programme newsletter:
Want to get in touch?
Please email us at schoolsNI@sustrans.org.uk or call 07824 627 674.