Walk to School encourages healthy habits
Students from primary schools across Bass Coast participated in a range of activities throughout October for Walk to School month.
VicHealth’s Walk to School program encourages primary students to walk, scoot or ride to and from school, promoting more active and healthy habits and an improved lifestyle.
This year, 11 Bass Coast schools participated, including Bass Coast Specialist School, Bass Valley Primary School, Cowes Primary School, Inverloch/Kongwak Primary School, Newhaven College, Newhaven Primary School, Powlett River Primary School, San Remo Primary School, Wonthaggi North Primary School, Wonthaggi Primary School and Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Primary School.
As well as providing a fun way to achieve the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity every day, Walk to School provides a great platform for children to learn about road safety.
Bass Coast Shire Council supported the VicHealth program, by promoting Walk to School and encouraging primary schools to participate and take part in healthy events, healthy breakfasts, walking, scooting or riding to school and undertaking and activities throughout the month of October. Council also provided schools with prizes and Safe to School maps.
The maps identified footpaths and safe crossing points, as well as some safety tips. The maps also suggested Walk and Drop Zones, encouraging parents to drop children off a block from school so they could walk the rest of the way.
Council and Victoria Police monitored school crossings and driver behaviour throughout the month to promote safety. The increased number of students walking, scooting and riding to school also helps to reduce congestion around schools during drop off and pick up times.
VicHealth funding helped schools hold healthy events and breakfasts, to further promote the importance of exercise and healthy eating habits.
Powlett River Primary School hosted an all-day sports carnival, followed by an award ceremony. Newhaven College’s healthy event had children riding from school towards Rhyll. Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Primary School held a walk/ride to school day, followed by a healthy breakfast.
Students participating in the program received recognition through awards and certificates. Prizes included YMCA vouchers, movie tickets and water bottles donated by Bendigo Bank and Westernport Water.