JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A quarter of a million students across the United States are ditching the car or the bus in favor of walking to school today.
Hundreds of students and parents here on the First Coast plan to join them.
It's all part of International Walk to School Day which started 14 years ago to encourage kids to walk or bike to school.
The goal is to promote them doing that safely. Students will learn how to remain injury-free as they take the trek or ride to school.
The health benefits are also being touted, especially now with billions being spent on child obesity related issues per year.
School leaders hope the trend will last past today.
"It's a wonderful thing to look out the windows and see children coming to school that way, rather than being dropped off in buses or cars," said Julia Landon Assistant Principal Sara Bravo.
There are 14 schools in the Northeast Florida area participating in Walk to School Day. Organizers hope to highlight the areas where it's safe for kids to walk or bike.
"We do a lot of community outreach and education with the students and the community so we are being more respectful of the interactions between the cars and the cyclists and the pedestrians to really promote better behaviors," said Valerie Feinberg, Health Planning Council of Northeast Florida.
Dozens of Julia Landon students plan to meet up at different areas and take about a 15 minute walk to school. They are scheduled to take off between 7:15 and 7:25.
First Coast News