Slow Down and Smile: Kids Heading Back to School Sept. 8th


Students will be heading back to school on Tuesday, September 8th, with many students getting there on foot or bike. Help keep our students safe by driving cautiously and look for students walking, biking, or rolling. To view the Safe Routes to School Grand Marais Route Map, click here, to help you plan your child’s route to school. There will also be a Walking School Bus Day on Wednesday, September 16th in Grand Marais.

Here are several key safety tips to help keep students safe, from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:

When Driving…

  • Look out for pedestrians everywhere, at all times. Safety is a shared responsibility.
  • Use extra caution when driving in hard-to-see conditions, such as nighttime or in bad weather.
  • Slow down and be prepared to stop when turning or otherwise entering a crosswalk.
  • Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and stop well back from the crosswalk to give other vehicles an opportunity to see the crossing pedestrians so they can stop too.
  • Never pass vehicles stopped at a crosswalk. There may be people crossing that you can’t see.
  • Never drive under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
  • Follow the speed limit, especially around people on the street.
  • Follow slower speed limits in school zones and in neighborhoods where there are children present.
  • Be extra cautious when backing up – pedestrians can move into your path.

When Walking…

  • Pedestrians 10 years old and younger should be accompanied by an adult or young adult on their way to and from school.
  • Walk on the sidewalk, but if there is none, walk as far left as possible facing traffic.
  • Do not push or shove others when you walk.
  • When crossing the street, look left-right-left for cars, and keep looking as you cross.
  • Use a crosswalk if available, and do not cross if a car is coming.

When Biking…

  • When bicycling to and from school, your two best protections are a properly fitted bicycle helmet, and a good grasp of traffic safety rules.
  • Always wear a helmet and make sure to buckle the chin strap.
  • Ride on streets with low traffic volume and lower speeds.
  • Always ride in the same direction as traffic, and obey all stop signs and signals.
  • Never use headphones or cell phones while riding.

For more information, visit the NHTSA page.

For more information about Safe Routes to School, contact local coordinator Maren at 218-387-2330 or

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