Evaluation

Evaluating the progress of your School Travel Plan enables an understanding of what works and helps to ensure the success of future investments in time and money. It is also necessary in order to receive Safe Routes to School grants. Since implementation of the plan may be long-term, tracking progress provides benchmarks and rationale for continued investment. Ideally, evaluations should be completed each year while walking and bicycling the routes in order to check the quality of the surrounding neighborhood’s infrastructure. Measurements might include:

Periodic Walk and Bike Assessments

How walkable and bikeable is your community? An evaluation of the conditions of the neighborhoods surrounding the schools such as whether signage, bike lanes, sidewalks, etc. are in existence and in good condition is essential. Taking pictures is a great way to document issues. For more information and to download walkability and bikability checklists, go the Walk and Bike Assessments section of the website.

Student Arrival and Departure Tally

A Student Arrival and Departure Tally tracks the number of children walking and biking to and from school. The results of the tally will provide valuable information such as estimating traffic congestion and environmental issues, understanding traffic patterns, etc. The tally should be administered at least twice during the school year.

You can download the Student Arrival and Departure Tally Sheet and have your results tabulated and summarized by Safe Routes to School. Safe Routes to School San Francisco also has developed Photo Prompts that can be used to help younger grades answer the travel mode to school. Please mail or scan and email all completed tallies with a cover letter identifying your school name, district, municipality and contact information (name, phone, address and email) to:

Safe Routes to School Resource Center
Attention: Sean Meehan
Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center
Rutgers, The State University
33 Livingston Avenue
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Phone: 848-932-7901
Email: srts@ejb.rutgers.edu

The SRTS Resource Center will tabulate and return the results to the contact name on the cover letter.

Parent Survey

A parent survey collects information about how their children travel to and from school and what barriers they face. The results of the survey indicate an understanding of the environment for walking and biking, why children don’t walk or bike to school, etc. All responses are confidential and names and information are NOT shared. The survey should ideally be administered at the beginning of the school year and towards the end of the school year to view the progress of any improvements made from SRTS programs. A Parent/Caregiver Survey in English is available here.  The SPANISH version of the Parent/Caregiver survey is here.  Results of the survey can be tabulated and summarized by Safe Routes to School.  Please send all completed surveys with a cover letter identifying your school name, district, municipality and contact information (name, address, phone and email) to:

Safe Routes to School Resource Center
Attention: Leigh Ann Von Hagen
Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center
Rutgers, The State University
33 Livingston Avenue
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Phone: 732-848-2854
Email: srts@ejb.rutgers.edu

An online parent survey is also available, and if you are interested in participating and using the online survey, please contact the Safe Routes to School Resource Center at 1-848-932-7901 or email at SRTS@ejb.rutgers.edu.

Evaluation of Walk and Bike Events

If your schools and community participate in walking and bicycling events such as the Walk to School day in October, tracking the number of students participating in walking and bicycling activities and events each time can determine the level of interest and what changes need to be made to maximize the effectiveness of each program and event.

Whichever methods are chosen, focus on measuring the effects of the program by examining short-term, medium-term, and long-term results. The success of the School Travel Plan can be evaluated by qualitative metrics such as:

  • Activity of the school transportation committee
  • School policy changes that support walking and bicycling
  • Integration of active transportation into the school curriculum
  • Participation in walk and bike to school days
  • Involvement of parents in walking and bicycling activities
  • Coordination with local governments and organizations to promote active transportation

If goals are not achieved, be sure to reevaluate and make changes to achieve your objectives. Don’t give up!

School Travel Plan Toolkit

Mapping Your Neighborhood
Conducting Walk and Bike Assessments
Walk and Bike Barriers and Opportunities
Goals and Actions
Evaluation
Existing School Travel Plans