Schools are invited to join an award-winning green travel scheme which has taken hundreds of thousands of cars off the road at peak times – and they’ll also have the chance to win a mountain of new books for their school library.
The Super Wow (Walk on Wednesday) scheme is now open to schools wanting to sign up for the 2018-2019 academic year – and schools who do so before July 1 will go into a prize draw to win 400 books.
Titles include the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney, a box set of David Walliams books including Gangsta Granny and Mr Stink, and the Aliens Love Underpants collection by Claire Freedman and Ben Cort.
Super Wow works by turning walking to school into a competition. In each participating school, children are asked to walk to school on Wednesdays – and there’s a weekly trophy for the best or most improved class, as well as stickers and certificates for individual children.
Then every month, there are big prizes for the best classes in each district – such as tickets to Kent attractions like Wildwood, Leeds Castle, and Planet Ice skating rink, as well as storytelling visits from authors, children’s television presenters, and sporting heroes.
The scheme has been a proven success across Kent, removing 318,000 car journeys from roads during school run hours last academic year.
In addition, pupils can study for the KM Charity Team’s road safety tests – earning certificates at bronze, silver and gold level – and schools are given resources for its Green Champions scheme, which rewards children who encourage environmental awareness.
Walk to school project officer Sarah Clyne said: “300,000 car journeys off the road is 300,000 fewer cars producing pollution – not to mention a huge drop in the number of cars jostling for space at the school gate.
“At the same time, participating schools generated around 700,000 green journeys; that’s an average of 18,000 children walking, cycling, or scooting at least part of the way to school once a week, every week.
“This doesn’t just have the obvious benefits for their physical health – head teachers also tell us the children are turning up at school more alert and ready for their lessons because the exercise and fresh air has woken them up.
“And the pupils tell us they like it because it’s extra time in the day they can spend with their friends or family.”
Super Wow is supported by Whites Transport, Ashford International Hotel, Orbit, Volker Highways, Countrystyle Recycling, Golding Vision (part of Golding Homes), Specsavers, Eurostar, Kent County Council, Medway Council, London Borough of Bexley, Three R’s Teacher Recruitment, Maidstone Borough Council, Ashford Borough Council, and Whitefriars.