SF kids don’t bike to school. Let’s change that.

December 9, 2016    

The SFMTA has just released a Child Transportation Survey, detailing how 45,000 of SF’s kids get to school. Spoiler alert, it’s mostly driving.

The good news:

Even though people who scooter, bike, and walk are a minority, they showed the highest satisfaction with their choices at 77%, 75%, and 66% respectively. Driving came in at a distant fourth with 40%.

The bad news:

Of all parents surveyed, “Respondents were least interested in bicycling, with about 70% indicating that they had never tried bicycling and were not interested in doing so.”

I get it, bicycling isn’t something most parents are familiar with. When my kids were little, riding them around on a bike was considered borderline child endangerment, and I had parents straight up tell me so more than once. But conventional wisdom is often wrong, and bicycling grows strong, healthy, self confident kids, so…

Let’s start changing that.

Only 20% of children live more than four miles from their school. Over 50% live within their neighborhood district. These are easily bikeable distances.The practical difficulties are more about finding the proper equipment and getting past the fear of doing something new.

If you know a family standing on the brink of that fateful decision to buy their first car, or anyone with kids, please recommend that they get in touch with the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and learn about

Urban Bicycling Workshops for adults

Youth and Family workshops for kids

Safe Routes to School for everyone

And for any cash strapped family, remind them that cars are expensive.

You have saved:$4,200$12,800$21,300$29,800$38,300
Year 1Year 2Year 3Year 4Year 5
Car cost$8,700$8,700$8,700$8,700$8,700
Bike cost$4,500$100$200$200$200