Using Incentives, Analy Students Achieve 21% Reduction in Single Passenger Commutes
The AP Statistics class at Analy High School participated in a year-long project with the Climate Protection Campaign’s Cool Schools program to understand the greenhouse gas impact of student drivers at their school. For three weeks this spring the class developed an initiative to promote walking, biking, carpooling, and busing to school. For every day that a student arrived at school using one of these modes, they received a stamp on a card. When a student filled a card with 5 stamps, he or she could redeem the card for discounts at local stores. During these three weeks, Analy students reduced single passenger car trips by 21%, achieving the class’s goal of 20%! In their follow-up survey, the class identified the top two reasons that students changed their behavior were increased gas prices and the student commute cards.
Students in the class saw both the urgency to take action on global warming and the opportunities for students to take action at their school and in the community. Many went out of their way in volunteer time (beyond the class requirements) to promote Analy’s CommUTE (Community United Toward the Environment) initiative to fellow students and to local elected officials. Thanks to the enthusiasm and success of the class, the West Sonoma County Union High School District Board of Trustees and the Sebastopol City Council are taking action to encourage alternatives to driving in and around schools.