Family Biking: Volunteer for new middle-schooler community rides

Posted by on September 17th, 2019 at 9:17 am

Practicing bike safety skills on the roads around our school.
(Photo: Madi Carlson)

Cycling education in local schools isn’t new — the City of Portland has been helping students learn bike safety skills since 2005. With partners like The Street Trust, the transportation bureau educates hundreds of elementary students through their Safe Routes to School program. This year they plan to graduate the program up to middle school.

Our Family Biking column is sponsored by Clever Cycles.

➤ Read past entries here.

This new Train the Trainer 6th PE Pilot is a two-week program where middle school physical education and health teachers will focus on riding skills and rules of the road. The ultimate goal is for every middle school to receive instruction, but PBOT will begin by focusing on Title 1 schools (schools where at least 33% of students receive financial support services from the state).

Once the students have learned and practiced their skills, they’ll explore their neighborhood on a community bike ride. That’s where you come in. Last week PBOT put out a call for volunteers to join these rides.


All the Fall 2019 Community Rides happen on Fridays and the ones below still need volunteers — especially the rides this week at George and Roseway Heights.

➤ George Middle School (10000 N Burr)
Friday, September 20th

➤ Roseway Heights Middle School (7334 NE Siskiyou)
Friday, September 20th

➤ Tubman Middle School (2231 N Flint)
Friday, October 4th

➤ George Middle School (10000 N Burr)
Friday, October 4th

➤ Woodlawn Elementary School (7200 NE 11th Ave)
Friday, October 18th

➤ Ron Russell Middle School (3955 SE 112th Ave)
Friday, October 18th

➤ Peninsula Elementary School (8125 N Emerald)
Friday, October 25th

➤ Parkrose Middle School (11800 NE Shaver)
Friday, November 1st

To volunteer or get more information, please contact Jordan Bailey, Education Programs Director, at jordan [at] thestreettrust [dot] org or (503) 226-0676 ext. 13.

I’m very excited about this program because I’ve noticed how kids often age out of biking to school. For my Hosford-attending seventh grader it’s because the route is too far and busy for him to navigate on his own (last year I was able to escort him back and forth each day) so he takes the school bus. In my own case way back when, I biked one mile to my middle school once and was teased for biking by some kids, and warned my bike would get stolen from the rack by others, so I resorted to walking the rest of my tenure there. I’d like to think a program like this would have kept me biking.

What do you think of this new program and would something like this have helped you as a tween? Thanks for reading!

Remember, we’re always looking for people to profile. Get in touch at madidotcom [at] gmail [dot] com if it sounds like fun to you.

— Madi Carlson, @familyride on Instagram and Twitter

Browse past Family Biking posts here.

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jillian detweiler

Thanks for this great post Madi! Supporting kids to culminate bike safety education with a ride off campus is fun and rewarding. Please volunteer if you can!

Gary B
Gary B

Awesome, thanks for getting this out there. I’ll sign up for George this Friday!

joel domries
joel domries

i really like this. im an inner se person, but….. if it isnt full by the time i lay out my october schedule im in.

that person with sandals. i could never find my middle school, and always got lost as a kid when i had to walk two miles after missing a bus….. this program seems so so cool.