By Student Reporter: Emma Grace Benzing
Germantown, Tennessee--July 28, 2021-- Using the curriculum from Bikeology, Andrew Martin established GMSD’s new Bike Safety and Education Program. This program will be at FES, DES, HHS, and FHES this year, and will be at RES and HMS the following year. The curriculum will focus on the importance of bike safety. The program received a Mayoral Proclamation from Mayor Palazzolo for the creation of this program and its alignment to the vision of his Bicycle and Pedestrian Commission. Andrew Martin will be speaking to this commission in August to discuss the program as well as the vision of what this program can mean for the betterment of our GMSD students and community. He will also be attending a cyclist instructor training in September with The League of American Bicyclists to better lead and serve this program for GMSD.
To enhance the program, Andrew Martin formed partnerships with Memphis Hightailers, Bike the Planet, the Germantown Composite local competitive Mountain bike racing team, and GMSD’s SPED Department. Memphis Hightailers will be donating 30 new bike helmets to our schools to have them for students that might not have access to a helmet otherwise. They'll be providing instruction and guidance to our PE teachers for an effective curriculum implementation by utilizing their bike instructors for a future PD session. Bike the Planet, a local bike vendor, will aid in purchasing bikes/supplies at a discounted rate, inspect and service bikes, and participate in community initiatives for the benefit of our GMSD community.
The Germantown Composite biking team will help recruit GMSD students in grades 6-12 that would be interested in building their cycling skills in a fun and competitive atmosphere. The program will also be working with the SPED Department to make inclusive steps to accommodate our students with disabilities, such as the purchasing of balance bikes, smaller bikes, resistance trainers, hand pedals, and special needs tricycles. GMSD’s new Bike Safety and Education program plans to educate and create a more bike-friendly Germantown.