The school received its award from www.ModeshiftStars.org, which is a nationally benchmarked standard for school travel plans. It requires a five per cent reduction in car travel to the school gate to achieve gold, plus more than 20 different initiatives delivered by the school.
Headteacher Jo Mumford and travel plan co-ordinator Emma Duffield worked in close partnership with the Hampshire County Council My Journey travel planning team and Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) Ben Besley, which has resulted in a coordinated approach to tackling the complex issues and positive feedback from neighbouring residents.
Resident Linda Gouldsmith said: "I cannot think of a more worthy recipient of the gold award than Woodlea. As a resident I have seen first-hand the amount of work that has been put into achieving it. Definitely best in class."
Woodlea headteacher Jo Mumford said: "I am really proud of all the hard work Emma Duffield, PCSO Ben Besley, the travel plan team and our junior road safety officers have achieved. The impact of all their initiatives has been recognised by not only our school community but also our local community.
"We have worked hard with our neighbours to ensure we take into account their views as well. I know the work that has been done will only continue to go from strength to strength."
Emma Duffield, Woodlea’s travel plan co-ordinator, said: "The location of our school being on a 90 degree bend in the road has caused a constant concern for road safety. Before implementing the various initiatives, some families were reluctant to walk to school, because of inconsiderate parking and traffic congestion. This congestion was addressed through the launch of the ’five-minute walking bubble’, which created a space with fewer cars at the school entrance.
"More families felt safer to walk all the way to school and those who drive are asked to park at least five-minutes’ walk away so everyone can enjoy a bit of exercise."
Jo Mumford, along with other staff members, can be seen at the front gate every drop off and pick up, wearing hi-vis to supervise the arrival and departure of pupils, monitor traffic and encourage responsible parent parking.
Woodlea now has signage displayed at school run times to remind drivers of expectations for considerate parking and care when driving past the school.
For more information visit www.woodlea.hants.sch.uk/parking/