Walking from Trailside Coffee to Henley Middle School

More context to come, but for now …

I asked Crozetians for the services of a teenager to photograph the walk from Trailside Coffee in Old Trail to Henley Middle School. From sidewalks to paths to the bridge back to a path, it looks like a pretty nice walk to me.

To the kid who took the pictures, thank you. To the administration of Albemarle County Schools, please be reasonable and allow kids to walk to school.

Update: Thank God for bureaucracy. How ever would our children survive without it?

realcrozetva (realcrozetva) on Twitter-1.jpg

Related:

How many residents in Old Trail walk to School?
Walking to School – do you do it?

Update: a very relevant and timely story, Are We Overprotecting Our Kids?

Update #2: From Jessica with the Crozet Trails Crew:

Thanks for the slide show. The Crozet Trails Crew would like to work with Old Trail, the Schools, and the County to improve and/or maintain this trail so that school officials, parents, and kids feel like it is a safe option for getting to and from school. We would be happy to meet with all interested parties on site and to schedule a workday as early as September 4th. Please contact Jessica@crozettrailscrew.org to volunteer or with suggestions.


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24 Replies to “Walking from Trailside Coffee to Henley Middle School”

  1. Has anyone considered organizing a “walking school bus”? Nothing fancy, just a group of kids escorted by a responsible adult.

  2. Oh the horror.  That was frightening.  I would appreciate it if you would add a disclaimer that this slideshow contains disturbing images of mayhem and parental discretion is advised.  

    I for one would not let any child try to navigate that route to hell. Certainly not without a helmet.  That might be the most dangerous path I have ever seen.  How is a child supposed to walk ON GRASS?  Or paths for that matter?  And that Bridge?  What is that for?  Tight rope artists? Gymnasts?Also note the roots.  I know they’re hard to see but they’re there.  Waiting.  They wait.  Very dangerous for little feet.  And you’re taking your life in your hands trying to get across a soccer field.  What is this a marathon!?  Could the school provide a golf cart or something to ferry the little ones all that way and keep their wee shoes dry from the morning dew?  We would all do well to keep our kids safe and lazy where they belong.  In cars.  NOT OUTSIDE!

    All kidding aside, thanks for the tweets from the meeting.  I can’t believe Josh Davis said the roots were dangerous.  Wish I could’ve been there to hear for myself.

  3. Do you really think the school will give you their blessing or safety approval that allows your children to walk to school?   This is just another thing that individual parents need take the responsibility in determining if its safe for their kids to walk based on their kids and their route.   After all, it is your children.   If  “Josh Davis” says that the roots of the path are a deterrence to walking safely, then do the walk yourself and decide for yourself.  He gave you his opinion.  You can take it or leave it.  

    No matter if schools recommended or not, parents are still responsible – not the school.   Putting this off on the school to say its ‘ok’, is well, sad.      

    1. “No matter if schools recommended or not, parents are still responsible – not the school.   Putting this off on the school to say its ‘ok’, is well, sad.”

      And that’s the thing. The school has a policy prohibiting children from walking to school.  How they can implement such a policy is beyond me. 

      If my children went to Henley (one did, one will), I would take the opportunity to show my children what it means to stand up to a bureaucracy when they got suspended for walking to school. Until then, all I have is this forum to encourage others to exercise their rights and their common sense.

  4. I believe Josh Davis showed up with a desire to help, not curtail this local effort to allow children to walk to school. He spoke of growing up and having a newspaper route. I don’t believe he was there to throw a wet blanket on this movement. Walking to school is not for everyone, but for those of us that would like to have this effort move forward, the responsibility is on us to communicate with each other, talk to our representatives, SHOW UP FOR MEETINGS to let the “rule makers” know what we feel passionately about.
    Anyone interested in finding out how other communities have made healthy changes together (with a lot of creativity) should check out this very inspiring book-
    “The Great Neighborhood Book, A Do-It-Yourself Guide to Placemaking” By Jay Walljasper. To quote from that book-…”great leaders depend on on dedicated citizens. You can help local officials to do their best by respectfully, but firmly drawing their attention to what’s going wrong around the community and pointing out opportunities to make things better.”
    Show up at the Crozet Trails Day on October 15th to show your support for the Trails of Crozet.  Start a petition give children the ability to walk to school, create walking school bus routes to help enable your kids a safe group to start walking with…there is a lot that can be done to further this effort. But we as a community need to do it.

    1. I agree he wanted to help, and to listen, but the constraints being put on the kids, and allowed to be put on    by the parents are unreasonable. 

      I missed the part of the meeting where it was explained why the principals didn’t attend (again). Why weren’t they there?If the parents choose to allow the school to dictate how they can parent, that’s their decision; it’s one that I find truly sad and offense.But you’re right – if no one shows up to support the Trails Crew nor to tell the administration that they’re wrong (or right) then the administrators are going to feel that making the correct decisions.

    2. You really don’t need a groups of people to gather together to determine that common sense things like walking to school is acceptable.   Just do it.  Its a walk to school for god sake.   Walk and deal with what happens.    Worst case…your child walks to school and has to sit through the whole day.  

      If my child got suspended for drinking/fighting (etc) around school, i would be upset at my child.   If my child got suspended for walking to school, i would be upset….AT THE SCHOOL!  

      Has anyone been suspended over this?  I would bet not,  its a policy that can’t stand up to squat.   

          1. Well, isn’t it obvious that walking to school is an introduction to deviant behavior?      Its starts out with walking, then they’ll want dancing (aka ‘Footloosing’), then drugs & alcohol, etc.    

  5. Thanks for the slide show. The Crozet Trails Crew would like to work with Old Trail, the Schools, and the County to improve and/or maintain this trail so that school officials, parents, and kids feel like it is a safe option for getting to and from school. We would be happy to meet with all interested parties on site and to schedule a workday as early as September 4th. Please contact Jessica@crozettrailscrew.org to volunteer or with suggestions.

  6. If there are too many roots, then why do the gym classes take school time to walk to Trailside Coffee for smoothies during gym class? Seems like a double standard…

  7. I do have to laugh about the roots comment. The WAHS cross country course ( the old one on school grounds) was full of roots and also deep ruts. That is why Friends of Western Albemarle Cross Country Track & Field worked with Old Trail to create a new course this year – the mown grass paths shown in the photos were created as part of our course. If it is good enough for our athletes to train and compete on, it should be good enough for kids to walk on. Yes, there is still some clearing work to be done on the parts behind Henley, but is is still a better path than the old course at the high school which hosted VHSL meets for years. So it certainly is safe for walking!

    1. why kill ourselves clearing anything behind henley, just walk up old trail drive (on the grass of course).  i certainly think beights can add a sidewalk, oh wait…they wont finish ones in their own neighborhood (in front of the cemetary and at the corner of grassdale and west end)

  8. I have to believe that the people that actually want to walk are already walking
    and the rest,well, are doing the talking. How can people figure out what to buy,
    where to live, what time to get up, if they cannot grasp the concept of walking
    on a public right of way to get someplace. Yes Virginia, you can walk…

    1. Yay! Will wonders never cease. We AGREE on something… This could be the start of something new Edward!
      Virginia can walk…as home to to the Appalachian Trail- regular walking should be our motto.

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