Related Resources

  • AST Policy and Practice Recommendations for Alberta School Jurisdictions

  • AST Curricular Connections (K-9) Tool

  • School Travel Planning Toolkit

  • Clean Air Responsible Schools Program for Air Quality Monitoring

  • Keep Cool Program

  • Traffic Observation Checklist

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Stories From the Field

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winter cycling on a fat tire bike


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A laminated, corrugated plastic board with an image on it that says "Trail Tales". This is the introductory page to inform passersby of the purpose of the Trail Tales project.


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YEG Common Ground

20190418 Tomahawk Walk KM 0317

Mobilizing Edmonton School Jurisdictions as Active Transportation Leaders

Schools are hubs of community: they are gathering spaces, destination points in the travel day, and places where desired behaviours, like active transportation (AT), can be taught, influenced, practiced, and modeled. Since 2017, Ever Active Schools has employed an evidence-based school travel planning approach to improve conditions for those choosing to walk and wheel for the school journey.

To date, EAS, and other organizations involved in this field, has taken the lead in implementing and scaling this work in Edmonton schools; however, a greater impact would be made if active transportation was led at a system’s level by school jurisdiction leadership. This would not only enhance school buy-in and readiness, but also help to normalize school travel planning. The Active School Travel (AST) Policy and Practice Recommendations for Alberta School Jurisdictions resource, developed by the Alberta Policy Coalition for Chronic Disease Prevention’s Active School Travel Subcommittee, was designed to guide school jurisdictions to do just that: establish policy and make changes at a system's level.

Common Ground - Mobilizing School Jurisdictions as Active Transportation Leaders aims to inform and guide Edmonton school jurisdictions through the recommendations of the policy and practice resource, while applying these recommendations and best practices in six Edmonton area schools. With jurisdictional leadership and the support of EAS and other community and municipal partners, school communities will be better equipped to position active transportation as the preferred mode choice for the school journey, thus supporting the City of Edmonton’s Community Energy Transition Strategy and Action Plan through the avoidance of greenhouse gas emissions.


The most challenging pieces of a project such as this are that, for school communities, addressing traffic issues at their school sites may seem insurmountable and something that they are not trained to handle; secondly, schools are busy places and school staff is hesitant to take on additional work if it doesn't support curricula; thirdly, behaviour change is required to shift the needle on transportation mode choice and that takes time, patience, and trust in the process. To increase buy-in from school communities, EAS developed this content into a student leadership, project-based learning opportunity and helps administrators and teachers understand how it supports Alberta curricula by way of the Active School Travel Curricular Connections (K-9) tool. The benefits to participating in an active school travel project such as YEG Common Ground for school communities are many: improved health and learning outcomes for students; improved road safety; reduced greenhouse gas emissions; and a more connected, resilient school community.


The Active School Travel Policy and Practice Recommendations for Alberta School Jurisdictions resource has been reviewed with planners and transportation leads from Edmonton Public Schools (EPS) and Edmonton Catholic School Division. Six schools, recommended by the two school boards (three project schools/board) to participate in the project, have completed an Ever Active Schools In Residence, a four day intensive workshop where student leadership teams are guided through team building activities, data collection and analysis, issue identification and prioritization, and action planning (problem solving). Air quality assessments have been completed at each school site. AST Event Day Calendars, complete with registration information and supplementary resources, have been shared with both school jurisdictions. School site designs that are increasingly responsive to the needs of active travellers are being considered by school jurisdiction and City planners. The goal of scaling school travel planning to more and more school sites is becoming a reality as partnership opportunities grow.

Interested in learning more or getting involved?