FCPS takes on safer streets

Image via FFX Now

Image via FFX Now

Madeline Miller, Staff Writer


 Fairfax County Public Schools work very hard to ensure that when students are at school, they feel safe. From school officers to nurturing teachers, there is no doubt that safety is a priority to FCPS, but what about when a student is no longer at school?


 Despite having laws and regulations when it comes to school bus and student safety, there are still casualties that occur every year. In 2021, there were 181 injuries and 14 deaths of Fairfax county pedestrians due to motorized vehicles. Due to this daunting statistic, the FCPS board of Supervisors has decided to do something. They plan to implement a ‘Safer Streets for All’ program to help ensure the safety for people using non-motorized transportation.


 Along with this initiative come many objectives. The first seven that are planned to be put in place include establishing an interdisciplinary staff force, making a new job position for running this program as well as monitoring it, for every project that may include transportation there must be an expert on the consulting team, maintenance and active transport along high-risk areas will become priorities, new county roads will be created with human safety in mind, staff will be trained accordingly, and finally there will be a interactive map to stay up to date on resident concerns. These objectives are supposed to be put into place by July 1, 2023.


 With children of varying ages involved with FCPS, making travel safety a priority is a logical choice. Along with safety improvements, plenty of parents will be pleased knowing that their child is getting to and from school in a safe manner. In a county survey, it was found that one out of four people currently feel like the FCPS transportation is unsafe. This is a statistic that would most likely adjust considering the new program.


 Although not every student has to use the school’s transportation, many rely on it. According to the FCPS website, 141,000 students use school transportation each day. With knowing how many rely on these vehicles, dealing with this issue would become a primary concern. 


 This new program will likely be popular for both parents and students. If students feel safer going to and from school, there is a higher chance that attendance may increase as well. This new initiative is important to the county, and is likely to adjust the mindset of school transportation for many.