Limerick gaelscoil wins national Green Schools cycling award

Student and staff representatives from Gaelscoil Sairseal with their national award.

A Limerick primary school is one of Ireland’s three top Cycling Schools of the Year.

Gaelscoil Sáirséal on Shelbourne Road in Limerick City was named Ireland’s Cycling Primary School of the Year by the Green-Schools Programme, following their participation in the programme’s Big Travel Challenge in February.

Nine schools received national awards and named as Cycling, Walking, Scooting and Park ‘n’ Stride Schools of the Year with Gort Community School in Galway was named Ireland’s Travel School of the Year.

The Big Travel Challenge required schools to concentrate on one sustainable transport mode for two weeks to see if they could achieve real, lasting change in the travel behaviour of their staff and students.

The challenge is an initiative of Green-Schools Travel, which is supported by the NTA and the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport.

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Students and staff at Gaelscoil Sáirséal were previous award winners for their efforts promoting scooting to school. For the Big Travel Challenge in February the school focused on cycling to school.

They generated friendly competition using leader boards, a  raffle for students who cycled and an email competition for parents each day. The students also decorated their helmets with recycled materials, with prizes awarded for best designs.

During their Big Travel Challenge the number of students cycling to Gaelscoil Sáirséal increased by 85.

Green-Schools Travel Manager Jane Hackett said they were excited to be back celebrating the Big Travel Challenge and she was impressed with the hard work and dedication these students put into changing travel habits at their school.