Friday, April 12, 2013

Students’ Glogs Showcase Accessible Transportation Options

By Whitney E. Gray

After graduating from high school, students move from relying on yellow school buses to get around to using a variety of transportation options, including fixed-route buses, subway systems, taxis, bicycles, and personal automobiles. For students with disabilities and many other students who may not have the use of a car or may not drive, public transportation will become the link to an independent adult life as they pursue higher education or seek employment.  

To enhance awareness about public transportation options for students with and without disabilities, Easter Seals Project ACTION developed the Inclusive Transportation Service-Learning Program. The main goal of this pilot program was to support school districts in implementing projects for all students regardless of their abilities in order to build leadership skills and increase students’ knowledge of various aspects of accessible transportation services in their local communities. Four school districts took part in the program: Crestview Local Schools in Convoy, Ohio; Bay District Schools in Florida; Stow Munroe Falls Local School District in Stow, Ohio; and Socorro Independent School District in El Paso, Texas.  

Team Ryan Glog
One part of Stow Munroe Falls Local School District’s project is now posted online in a fun, multi-media format. Students from Stow met with Summit County Metro Transportation to discuss needs and learn about present transportation options. They then developed graphical blogs, or glogs, as a way to depict what they learned about transportation in their community.  Check out the glogs created by Team Jacob or Team Ryan online, or see a screenshot of Team Ryan’s glog to the left.  

By learning about transportation options together, students help each other become more confident in transitioning from riding yellow school buses to using the transit options available in their communities. As one of the school project directors noted, ESPA’s Inclusive Transportation Service-Learning program “makes people realize that there are many options available and that transportation can’t be a barrier to mobility and independence.” For more information on the Inclusive Transportation Service-Learning Program, download ESPA’s new report, Initial Impact Evaluation of the Easter Seals Project ACTION Inclusive Transportation Service-Learning Program.


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