Gov. Doug Burgum today announced that 299 public and non-public elementary schools in North Dakota will have the opportunity to receive the All Kids Bike Learn-to-Ride Kindergarten PE (Physical Education) Program, giving a projected 9,000 students the opportunity to learn to ride a bicycle in the 2023-24 school year alone. The goal is to gain private sector partners to ensure every kindergarten class in the state has access to this exciting program, making North Dakota the first state to provide statewide programming.
All Kids Bike, a nonprofit organization equipping schools with everything needed to teach children to ride a bike, was awarded a $1,568,000 grant from the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) Fund to bring its Learn-to-Ride PE Program to elementary schools throughout the state. Additionally, the Governor’s office is working to secure additional funding needed to ensure the program is available to kindergarteners statewide.
“Learning to ride a bicycle provides a lifelong skill that promotes physical activity and independence and gives students another mode of transportation as they get older,” Burgum said, noting the previous financial support from MDU Resources Foundation to establish the All Kids Bike program at Northridge Elementary School in Bismarck in November 2022. “We’re grateful for the support of Scheels and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway who have signed on to this incredible opportunity. With the state offering a 3-to-1 match, we are seeking additional private sector partners to make the Learn-to-Ride program available statewide and make North Dakota the first state in the nation to provide this opportunity for every kindergarten student.”
“We applaud Governor Doug Burgum and his bold vision to establish the Learn-to-Ride Kindergarten PE Program in all of North Dakota’s elementary schools,” said Lisa Weyer, executive director of the Strider Education Foundation, the 501(c)(3) nonprofit operating All Kids Bike. “Giving this key developmental milestone to every kindergarten student in North Dakota will reap lifelong benefits for individuals, families and communities.”
“As magnified during the pandemic, many children are struggling with isolation, lack of physical activity and increased screen time, which are contributing to mental and physical health challenges in and out of the classroom,” Weyer added. “Learning to ride a bike builds independence and healthy habits beyond the basics of movement and balance. We are grateful for the opportunity to expand our program so significantly.”
Each All Kids Bike Kindergarten Learn-to-Ride PE Program is comprised of a fleet of 24 Strider bikes, pedal conversion kits, helmets, a teacher instruction bike, rolling metal bike storage racks, curriculum aligned with national SHAPE PE standards, teacher training and organizational support from All Kids Bike for as long as a school operates the program. Each fleet of bikes has at least a decade-long lifespan, giving potentially hundreds of kindergarten students per school the opportunity to learn to ride.
All Kids Bike is currently reaching out to all eligible North Dakota elementary schools, public and non-public. School districts with elementary schools participating in the program include Bismarck, Bottineau, Burlington, Center, Devils Lake, Dickinson, Dunseith, Fargo, Garrison, Grand Forks, Hazen, Jamestown, Mapleton, Medina, Minot, Minto and Tioga among others. To learn more about the statewide initiative in North Dakota or find out how to bring the program to your local school district, contact email@example.com.