This past weekend, Mike Kotyk from our office attended the 2014 Youth Bike Summit at Parsons New School for Design in New York City on behalf of Bike Pittsburgh www.bikepgh.org.
The Youth Bike Summit is an annual three-day national conference that brings together educators, advocates, activists, teenagers, practitioners, researchers, policy makers, and community leaders to engage around youth, bicycles, education, and advocacy. The conference attracts people from different disciplines and backgrounds to network, learn, and explore how the bicycle is a catalyst for positive social change.
Mike attended numerous workshops and presentations that involved learning how different organizations and school districts utilize Safe Routes to School funding to develop and implement Health and Physical Education curriculum focused on pedestrian and bicycle safety and advocacy. Several of these workshops and presentations are available online at: http://new.livestream.com/TheNewSchool/youthbikesummit
The Cascade Bicycle Club and the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia both have established youth education programs in their local school districts. Both organizations utilize a “train the trainer” method in teaching school educators how to institute bike safety curriculum for physical education and health classes. The Cascade Bicycle Club in Seattle, Washington actually has a fleet of 300 bicycles with helmets and other props that they provide to 10 schools at a time for a 3 week bicycle safety and education program. The Philly program uses an off bike approach to teach kids about what to expect on the road.
In his capacity as a member of the Bike Pittsburgh Board of Directors, Mike is working to assist Bike Pittsburgh in developing an Education, Outreach, & Youth Engagement program.
Some of the organizations that already have exceptional youth bike programs in place include:
Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia
Safe Routes Philly
BikeABQ – Albuquerque, New Mexico
Cascade Bicycle Club – Seattle, Washington
Read more about the Youth Bike Summit here: www.youthbikesummit.org