The trip to and from school can consume a lot of resources, but it does not have to. There are many ways to make the journey more eco-friendly. Here are a few ideas:
1. Try the Walking School Bus
OK, so this does involve some effort. A Walking School Bus is essentially a group of children walking to school under adult supervision. The group expends as they "pick up" more children along the route.
The kids get much needed exercise, fuel is not required, and it is far safer than walking alone. Also, children who have had a chance to exercise before class have a better attention span and tend to learn more. The Walking School Bus is a great option for kids who live near to school.
Travel groups can be arranged on bikes too. The principle is the same. The adult led children can form a bike procession and pick up classmates along the route to school. Again, this is great exercise.
3. The Regular Yellow School Bus
Still a safe way to travel to school, since it is mass transit, the school bus is more eco-friendly than each kid taking a ride in a car. School buses still burn fuel and produce emissions but local school authorities are working to fill the buses and reduce "idle time" during transit. School buses are also top of the list for safety.
If there is no school bus and walking and cycling are out of the question then carpooling is a great option. If one or more of the parents has a modern fuel-efficient vehicle, all the better. Just observe safety rules and have each child strap in properly and, if necessary, in an approved booster seat. You will not be able to cram extra kids into the car, but it is never a good idea to sacrifice safety to save some fuel.
5. Walking to School
Maybe your child does not live on the route of a Walking School Bus, but lives in close proximity to the school. Walking is still a great option. Again, make sure your child is properly supervised and, if possible, try to form a small group with other children that live nearby. It's a great time for social interaction.
Getting to school does not have to tax the environment. With just a little forethought and preparation your kid can get to school safely while saving our valuable resources.