On October 8, 2008, Cleveland Elementary School and NEW Montessori School joined millions of children, parents, teachers and community leaders around the globe in walking to school to celebrate International Walk to School Day. Despite the drizzly weather, the participation was great with over 80 percent of the students at Cleveland Elementary School and NEW Montessori School walking or biking to school.
Staff members met students and families at various spots throughout the Village and walked to school together. According to staff, this was fun and exciting for the students and staff.
Families walked and biked to school with their children and grandchildren and pets too. Police Chief Barber of the Cleveland Police Department patrolled the area to oversee the traffic.
When the walkers arrived to school they were cheered on by staff and other students and treated to a breakfast of apples and apple cider donated by Whispering Orchards; bagels donated by Natural Ovens; cheese donated by Sargento; and bottles of water donated by Bonde's Quik Mart.
Walk to School Day was an energizing event, reminding parents and children alike of the simple joy of walking and biking to school. It also served as an opportunity to focus on the importance of physical activity, safety, air quality and having a more walk-able community.
Childhood obesity is becoming a national epidemic. Since 1980, the prevalence of children overweight has tripled. About thirty-five percent of young people do not participate in regular vigorous physical activity. Young people aged 2-18 spend an average of four hours a day watching television. Walk your child to school day events promote and foster awareness on both the importance of regular physical activity, pedestrian safety, and sound nutrition.