Students celebrate Walk to School Day - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Students celebrate Walk to School Day

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SHELBURNE, Vt. -

With one foot in front of the other, Vermont kids say there are many reasons they're walking to school on this day.

"It's just a great way to get exercise and have fun, and walk to school with your friends," said Sydney Johnston, a student at Shelburne Community School.

Others, like animal-lover Adam Franz, say it's the environment that has them saying no thanks to a ride.

"I like walking to school because I like not having a lot of air pollution," said Franz, a student at Shelburne Community School.

It's International Walk to School Day and students across the Green Mountains laced up for the adventure.

In Shelburne, parents and teachers were in on the action, too.

"It's just a time to spend time with her," said Paul Beauchamp, a Shelburne parent.

"The parents are with their kids in the morning, they're taking their bike ride in the morning, they go to school and they come back home, ride back home," said George Goodwin, a crossing guard in Shelburne.

At the Shelburne Community School, teachers have been accompanying students on Wednesdays in the months of October and May for years.

"Get them ready for learning, give them time to connect with teachers or other staff in the building who are also participating in walking to school," said Vasanthi Meyette of the Shelburne Community School.

The special effort nearly doubles the number of kids who usually walk to school with mom or dad at the K-8 school.

"I think Walk to School Wednesday is a great idea," said Andy Johnston, a Shelburne parent.

"They're dressing up every morning to go to school, they've got their heavy backpacks on some days and they seem very cheerful," Goodwin said.

For Franz it's one of the best parts of his day and he's encouraging late sleepers and skeptics to give their own two feet a try.

"I think you should try it," he said. "It's really fun to see your friends that you might not see on the bus."

And that enthusiasm extends statewide. More than two dozen communities across Vermont participated in special "Walk to School" efforts Wednesday-- lessons learned outside of the classroom.

Wednesday's effort also encouraged kids to ride their bikes or scooters, as well.

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