National Walk to School Day held Oct. 6

Special to Gannett

FORT WALTON BEACH — On Oct. 6, hundreds of Okaloosa County students, parents, teachers and community members took to the streets to bring awareness to the need for year-round safe routes to school.

Sheriff Eric Aden and supervisors with Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office Youth Services Division joined students and faculty from Plew Elementary School on their walking journey.

Walk to School Day also serves to increase physical activity among children, to reduce air pollution and to build connections between families, schools, and their community.

The Florida Department of Health in Okaloosa County (DOH-Okaloosa) would like to recognize Healthy Okaloosa Schools partners: Edwins Elementary School, Bob Sikes Elementary School, Plew Elementary School, Kenwood Elementary School, Longwood Elementary School and Silver Sands School for their participation in Walk to School Day.

Student benefits from walking to school include:

• Supporting a healthy lifestyle

• Regular physical activity

• Stronger bones, muscles, and joints

• Reduced air pollution

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends that children and adolescents get 60 minutes or more of physical activity each day. Walking to school can be a great way to help children meet that goal.

The Healthy Okaloosa Schools program uses long-term, deep-impact partnerships with Okaloosa County schools to build the capacity of school-age youth, families and school staff to support school-age youth health, safety and well-being through sustainable programs and policies that support physical and emotional health of school-age youth. The Healthy Okaloosa team works with partners to implement sustainable policy and environmental strategies that support healthy behaviors.

To learn more about Healthy Okaloosa Schools visit