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School Travel Planning Coach, Active Transportation Barrie

Barrie, Ontario
Deadline August 29, 2014

Contract Position for Barrie Pilot Project

Location:  City of Barrie
Contract Term: Sept 2014 – June 2015 (46 weeks)
Hours of Work: Average 7 hours per week, flexible, days and evenings
Remuneration: Contracted with a total amount consistent with an hourly rate between $25-$35 per hour (based on experience and qualifications)

Active Transportation Barrie is a community-based working group that brings active transportation stakeholders and community partners together to focus on promoting and facilitating active transportation initiatives in Barrie. The Barrie/Simcoe Cycling Club is excited to partner with Active Transportation Barrie to lead a School Travel Planning (STP) pilot project. The Club is contracting an STP Coach who will work as a facilitator with two Barrie elementary schools during the 2014-15 school year to develop unique School Travel Plans.

What is School Travel Planning (STP)?

School Travel Planning is a comprehensive school community approach which aims to facilitate active and safe routes to school and increase the number of students and families choosing active transportation modes, such as walking and cycling. School boards, municipalities, police, public health professionals, parents, educators and students work together with a facilitator to identify and solve their school community active transportation issues.  All aspects of how children travel to and from school are investigated and documented.

A School Travel Plan is prepared for each school, which includes the steps the school and community stakeholders plan to implement such as:

  • school infrastructure e.g. bike shelters, bike racks, lockers;
  • education e.g. safety training for walking and cycling, raising awareness;
  • community mobilization e.g. walking school busses, walking buddies, cycling programs, ride sharing;
  • encouragement e.g. event days, recognition and rewards for walking/biking; and
  • engineering improvements at/or near school sites e.g. pedestrian crossings, adult crossing guards, repairs and upgrades to sidewalks, signage, bike lanes.

A School Travel Plan is intended to be a living document that becomes part of school policy and is revisited on a regular basis.

School Travel Planning Coach Responsibilities

The successful candidate will work with an established STP Pilot Project Steering Committee and two participating elementary schools to manage the School Travel Planning process as a pilot project in each school. The Green Communities Canada School Travel Planning Toolkit will be utilized by the STP Coach throughout the pilot project http://www.saferoutestoschool.ca/school-travel-planning-toolkit.

Main responsibilities include:

1.  Program Set-up (2 schools)

  • Participate with the Project Steering Committee in an orientation session for local school principals, interested teachers and parent/school council members, and assist with the selection of two local schools to participate in the STP pilot project;
  • Follow-up with the school principals to initiate the STP process once the schools have been selected;
  • Ensure the school community is informed of the project and next steps;
  • Establish the key contacts at the school for the project;
  • Initiate the development of a School STP Committee for each pilot school which may be comprised of school staff, parents, students and community stakeholders e.g. representatives of relevant community groups/organizations;
  • Co-ordinate regular meetings with each of the School STP Committees;
  • Determine timelines, responsibilities and a clear process for working together;
  • Assist the School STP Committee to develop the skills and networks needed to address STP issues.

2.  Data Collection and Problem Identification

  • Work with the School STP Committees and the Project Steering Committee to finalize data collection methods to determine the school travel planning issues and needs for each school;
  • Organize and oversee all aspects of data collection;
  • Provide each school with classroom and family surveys;
  • Coordinate optional traffic/pedestrian/cyclist counts;
  • Coordinate school site visits and school community walkabouts with stakeholders;
  • Collect, assess and analyze surveys and other school community data;
  • Communicate the data results to the School STP Committees and the Project Steering Committee;

3.  Action Plan Development

  • Support the School STP Committee to develop a School Travel Plan (Action Plan) to achieve goals and address the STP issues and needs;
  • Incorporate key findings from the data collection into the School Travel Plan;
  • Consult with the School STP Committee, community stakeholders and the Project Steering Committee for potential solutions and expertise to overcome challenges;
  • Ensure a summary of the draft Plan is circulated to the wider school community for input and use this feedback to refine the School Travel Plan;
  • Present the final draft of the Plan to the Project Steering Committee for input.

4. Action Plan Implementation

  • Support the School STP Committees to refine and carry out action items in their Plan;
  • Review the School Travel Plan regularly with each of the School STP Committees and the Project Steering Committee;
  • Continue to raise awareness within the pilot school communities about the School Travel Plan and the impact of implemented strategies.

5. Monitoring and Evaluation

  • Monitor and document ongoing changes occurring as a result of STP actions;
  • Compile and document feedback from members of each of the School STP Committees    regarding the STP process and their involvement in the pilot project;
  • Conduct follow-up data collection and repeat the classroom and family surveys;
  • Compile and communicate results and lessons learned with the pilot school communities;
  • Draft an evaluation report incorporating the School Action Plan with key findings, processes and outcomes, to be reviewed by the Project Steering Committee and provided to each of the pilot schools by the end of the school year.  Finalized versions of these reports will be included as part of an overall pilot project report compiled by the Project Steering Committee and presented to school boards and stakeholders.

Required Qualifications:

  • Strong communication skills, both written and verbal.
  • Excellent facilitation and presentation skills.
  • Ability to bring together key stakeholders for the project and ensure great working relationships to achieve the project’s overall objectives.
  • Demonstrated interest, or experience, in promoting active travel (walking, cycling) or related environmental, health or safety issues.   
  • Critical thinking and solutions focused problem solving skills.
  • Data collection and analysis skills, and report writing skills.
  • Proficiency in word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation software.
  • Ability to work well independently, and as part of a team.
  • Excellent meeting management, organizational and time management skills.
  • Ability to attend Steering Committee meetings and schools located within the City of Barrie.
  • Ability to work from home, flexible hours (days and evenings), and use of a personal laptop computer.
  • Criminal Background Check/Vulnerable Sector Screening.

Assets:

  • Demonstrated understanding of the school system in Ontario, including familiarity with school board policies regarding transportation and physical activity.
  • Experience working with elementary students, schools, parent/school councils.
  • Familiarity with neighbourhoods and elementary schools in the City of Barrie.
  • Use of a bicycle to gain first-hand experience and role model active transportation in the pilot school communities.

To Apply:

Submit a resumé and cover letter by email to Robb Meier at [email protected] by 4:30 p.m. on August 29, 2014. Only applicants selected for an interview will be contacted.

For more information about School Travel Planning, visit http://www.saferoutestoschool.ca/school-travel-planning.