Bicycle Safety and Awareness week kicked off this week at Father Gorman School, where kids in Grades 1 to 3 will be given safety talks by the RCMP and shown videos on safe riding.
“This year we’ve changed things up a bit; in the past we’ve always gotten kids from Grades 1 to 3 to bring their bikes to school and we would run through circuits and things like that,” said Colleen Flasch, spokesperson for the school’s bicycle safety and awareness committee.
“But because of our high population, and a lot of our students that don’t have bikes or helmets, we’re giving them the tools they can use in the classroom and during gym times to learn everything they need to know to be safe this summer and to be a good rider through the rest of their lives.”
Two organizations have jumped on board with the week that started May 9: the Saskatchewan Prevention Institute made a theme this year called “May the Helmet Be With You,” in an effort to help kids realize that not wearing a helmet could result in head trauma.
Parachute Canada, a national organization dedicated to preventing injury and saving lives, is also donating bookmarks and posters to put up around the school to drive home the message to students.
Flasch said faculty also wants the students to be mindful of road safety, hazards, traffic and road signs, hand signals and just how to be an all-around safe rider.
“Hopefully when the RCMP come they are also going to be touching base on the goals that we’ve set out for kids this year,” she said.
“And we just want to bring in the RCMP to let the kids know that they do care and it’s the whole community that cares about their safety and well-being.”
The bicycle safety and awareness committee also put together packages for the students to help them learn how to properly wear a helmet and the reasons why they are important, with a few tips thrown in there on how to keep a bicycle tuned up.
“Another thing that we’re going to be doing is we’re going to put out a few videos for teachers to show their students about what a safe rider looks like and what an unsafe rider looks like,” said Flasch.