Park and Stride

Park and Stride

About this activity

Suitable for pupils at all schools and nurseries, and their parents/carers. Supports the Geography, PE and PSHE and Citizenship National Curriculum.

Park and Stride encourages families to park their car a distance from school and walk the rest of the way. It allows those who live further from the school to introduce an element of active travel into their journey. As well as promoting physical activity, Park and Stride can reduce congestion and improve Air Quality around your school.

Park and Stride works well in conjunction with the walking zone activity.

Park and Stride is a simple idea for families who live far away from school and currently drive, but want to enjoy the benefits of walking to school.

Ask families to park or drop-off a ten-minute walk from school and complete their journey on foot. If using public transport, suggest they Drop-a-Stop (get off a couple of stops earlier) and walk the rest of the way to school.

Studies show that students who have walked for 10 minutes or more of their journey to school arrive more alert and ready to start the day! Park & Stride also helps reduce congestion around the school and improve air quality.

This Activity Card is designed to help successfully implement a formal Park and Stride scheme, including resources to help you:

  • Consult with students, parents, businesses and your local authority to identify the appropriate locations for parking and dropping-off, and the best walking routes to your school.
  • Working with students to design a Walking or Active Travel Zone Map
  • Gain support from parents and the wider community by writing to them; use the template letters to community/business and parents/cares

REMEMBER: children who are recorded as travelling to school using “Park & Stride” in your Whole School Travel Survey do NOT contribute to your schools “Car/Motorcycle” journey numbers – and so are a brilliant way of achieving real mode shift!

Activity steps

Hands Up for active travel
Do a Hands Up survey to find out how active your pupils' journeys to school are. Share the results of the survey with your borough officer and set your new active travel targets together.
Map where families travel from
Find out where students travel to school from and the routes which are most popular. Map children’s home postcodes, survey students, or look at the school’s catchment area. Open Street Map and Google My Maps are free mapping resources.
Choose locations
Think about car parks which are likely to be less busy during school start and finish times that can be used for parents to park or drop-off for your Park & Stride scheme e.g. town halls, retail parks, place of worship, pub and community centres.
Work with your community
Write to local business owners and residents in your selected locations to ask about parking during school-run hours (see resources for letter templates).
Invite families to take part
Let parents/carers know about Park and Stride, promote the parking / drop-off locations and encourage them to get involved (see resources for letter template).
Make an Active Travel Zone Map
Use the resource here to work with students and create a map the immediate area around the school, plotting on your Park & Stride parking / drop-off locations. Highlight the walking routes from these locations to the school, and include near-by bus stops.
Collect feedback
Ask pupils, parents/carers and the community what they think about Park & Stride to see where you have been successful and where you can improve. Re-do the Whole School Travel Survey to see whether active travel targets have been met.
Tell your story
Sign in to STARS to add your story and include pupils’ feedback. Explain the activity and add emails, photos, social posts and any posters or promotional materials. Feedback to your borough officer.


  • Walking
  • Smarter driving

This activity counts towards:

  • Travel activity

How it helps

  • Supports the Geography, PE and PSHE Curriculum
  • Eases congestion at school gates
  • Improves Air Quality around schools
  • Students arrive at school feeling more alert