school bus commuting

How do your kids get to school? You might be surprised to learn that the student commute is impacted by factors such as location, grade level, and maybe even the number of students eligible for free and reduced lunch.

A Maryland Department of Transportation statewide survey on student travel found the following statistics:

• 16% of students aged 5-18 walk or bicycle to school in the United States.
• Approximately 45% of Maryland school districts participate in supportive student travel activities, such as bicycle and pedestrian safety training and Walk to School Day events.
• 25% of suburban and urban schools encourage students to walk or bike to school, while only 10% of rural schools encourage students to walk or bike to school.
• 22% of elementary schools encourage children to walk or bike to school, while 17% of high schools and only 10% of middle schools encourage walking or biking.
• Schools that offer free and reduced lunches are more likely to encourage walking and biking to school, but are less likely to offer programs like Safe Routes to School.
• The counties surveyed reported numbers ranging from 56% to 100% of their student population that is bussed to school.

How far are parents willing to go to get their kids the education they need? Read our article on Maryland families who drive long distances for education here.

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