Active journeys to Scottish schools remain higher than pre-pandemic levels

New data from the 2022 Hands Up Scotland Survey, which looks at how young people travel to school across Scotland, shows that walking, wheeling and cycling journeys are higher than pre-pandemic levels

The Survey was first established in 2008, and since then the survey has been providing insight into journeys to school, and is the largest national dataset on school travel in Scotland. It is funded by Transport Scotland and is a joint project between Sustrans and Scottish local authorities.

The question posed to all school pupils and nursery children is “how do you normally travel to school?”, with a choice of travel mode options.

The number of pupils present is recorded, and pupils are asked to raise their hand for one of the modes only.

The latest survey was conducted during September 2022 found active travel to schools remains higher than pre-pandemic levels with almost half of all survey respondents saying they travelled actively to school in 2022.

While this represents a slight drop since last year, Sustrans’ Delivery Manager for Education, Young People and Communities, Tremaine Bilhamand, says it is “encouraging to see that active travel to school remains higher than pre-pandemic levels”.

She adds that, “with more employers than ever continuing to offer flexible working, many parents and carers are still able to get that extra quality time with their children by walking, cycling, skating or scootering to school together”.

The survey also found that travelling to school by bus has risen for the second year in a row and is now comparable to pre-pandemic levels.

Ms Bilhamand says that, not only does this suggest that children and young people have reengaged with sustainable public transport since the disruption caused by lockdown, “but it seems that the free bus travel for under 22s initiative is starting to have a positive impact”.

(Picture – Sustrans)


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