Students around the world have been walking out on strike to demand action on climate change. This is a story of how pupils in Didsbury also decided to protest, however for them it involved walking in, not walking out.
Beaver Road Primary School was working towards its Unicef Rights Respecting Award, whereby children identify an issue that’s negatively impacting on them and organise a campaign to address it.
For pupils at Beaver Road, traffic congestion and unacceptable parent behaviour were their priorities.
Complete with banners, 3D models and Living Streets’ mascot, Strider, the pupils protested outside the school.
They spoke with parents caught driving on zig zag lines and parking on the pavement, reminding them of the importance of travelling actively and safely.
The event was a huge success with support from many parents.
Following the pupils’ intervention and taking part in WOW – our year-round walk to school challenge - the number of children travelling actively to school rose to 87%.
As a result of the work the children had done completing a School Route Audit, organising and promoting their Pupil Protest, and sending a clear message to parents about their travel behaviour, they were invited to the Greater Manchester Moving event to introduce the keynote speaker, Mayor Andy Burnham.
Each child spoke with confidence and clarity, encouraging attendees to return to their colleagues and communities and encourage them to travel more actively. Mayor Burnham was so impressed by the children that he came to speak with them and is joining them for a walk to school soon.
WOW is delivered in Greater Manchester in partnership with TfGM as part of the Walk to School Outreach project, funded by the Department for Transport.