New LEGs for WCPSS Support Healthy Students
You may know that AHA has been working with Wake County Public School System (WCPSS) and WakeUP Wake County to advance Safe Routes to School. As a part of that effort, WCPSS replaced earlier standards with new Learning Environment Guidelines (LEGs) in May.
WCPSS has been working on updates for the last year, and the timing was perfect for including Safe Routes practices. These changes support planning for safe and active routes to school for students and families, and the LEGs are used when WCPSS is building new schools or renovating existing schools. While they don’t impact site selection, they do guide how buildings are built and making the school sites accessible to kids walking and biking to school.
The LEGs, which define characteristics of all the spaces in the school, include other considerations affecting physical activity opportunities as well. Huge thanks to the Facilities staff at WCPSS who were willing to spend the time with us, and to find a way to incorporate new language and the intent to support safe walking and biking to school. They are stretched thin with so many new schools underway so their willingness to do this was really a heroic effort.
A partnership team of UNC Highway Safety Research Center, Advocates for Health in Action, Wake UP Wake County, Active Routes to School and others offered input and drafted language for the new LEGs as part of a John Rex Endowment Safe Routes to School grant.
WCPSS is also a partner in this grant, working to improve safe and active routes to school. Our team meets regularly and has impacted language in the WCPSS Wellness Policy, updated in June 2017, the new LEGs, as well as municipal plans. Learn more about the LEGs for elementary, middle and high schools.