Hundreds of Students in NCESD Region Receive Free Bicycles through Statewide Bike Education Program

Published On: March 28th, 2024|Categories: News|
Hundreds of Students in NCESD Region Receive Free Bicycles through Statewide Bike Education Program

The largest bike education effort in Washington State history was celebrated at Orondo School District’s community luncheon on Friday, March 15, 2024. During the event, 19 students received bicycles to take home.

Taught in Seattle Public Schools since 2016, the Let’s Go Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety program has launched its first year of expansion across Washington state. The 3-week bicycle curriculum is delivered during PE class for students grades 3-8, and teaches the skills to become more confident bicyclists. By 2039, this program will be available at no cost to nearly all Washington elementary and middle schools.

“Remember the feeling of joy and freedom when you first learned to ride a bike?” said Ian Woodford, Statewide Bike Education Project Manager. “If so, you know why youth bike education matters. If you never had that opportunity, that is what this program seeks to change for Washington’s youth.”

North Central ESD was selected as a first-year partner and has already delivered bikes to four schools in North Central Washington: Manson School District, Orondo Elementary School, Mansfield School District, and East Omak Elementary. Schools in the region scheduled to participate in the program next year are Entiat School District, Soap Lake Elementary, Palisades Elementary, and Waterville School District.

Many students who participate during school will also be eligible to earn their own bicycle to keep. As one of the first schools to participate, 19 students received bicycles at Orondo School District’s community luncheon. These 5th graders will be able to use what they learned during class and continue biking after school around their neighborhoods.

One of the 5th grade students who earned a bicycle was Alex Villa-Gomez, who said this is his first bicycle. His mother, Maria Gomez, said “I just hope this program continues growing. It shows kids how to ride a bike, it helps them get exercise, and it helps them feel free. I didn’t have the opportunity to have one when I was a kid, or get my son one, so that brings a good feeling to me.”

The statewide bike program exists due to many years of hard work by Cascade Bicycle Club, ensuring funding for this important program (officially named the School-Based Bicycle Safety Education Program) would be included in the Move Ahead Washington transportation bill. They have tasked the network of nine Educational Service Districts (ESDs), known collectively as the Association of Educational Service Districts (AESD), to deliver the program and bike equipment to hundreds of Washington’s smallest school districts. This represents about half of eligible students statewide. The state’s 25 largest school districts will receive direct funding for staff and equipment to serve the remaining half, until 90% of Washington state students are being served annually.

“In these early years we’re prioritizing schools based on socio-economic status, racial demographics, and areas that are low-resourced,” said Stephen Rowley, Education Director at Cascade Bicycle Club. “But eventually, this program will reach 9 out of 10 Washington state students.”

During this pilot year, two ESDs have been tasked with serving 15 elementary schools, Between North Central ESD 171 (based in Wenatchee) and Northwest ESD 189 (based in Anacortes), more than 700 bicycles will be given to all 5th graders who participated in the program at these schools. More than 25 students will receive adaptive tricycles.

How To Get Your School Involved

If you are a school admin or PE teacher with grades 3-8 students, you can express your interest by contacting to be added to the rollout schedule.

Schools participating in the bicycle program will receive:

  • Free 1-day professional development for PE teachers (Clock hours available)
  • 3 week curriculum on bike safety
  • Loaner bikes and bike trailer delivery
    • 30 bikes per trailer
    • Trailer stays on-site for daily bike storage
  • Teacher curriculum and material support
  • Can be supported outdoors or in a school gym
  • An earn-a-bike component for eligible students

The majority of school districts will not have to apply for the grant, as the local ESD is applying on the behalf of most schools. Only the 25 largest school districts in the state will need to apply directly through Cascade Bicycle Club. Middle school (grades 5-8) begins in the 2025-26 school year.

To learn more visit Cascade Bicycle Club or contact Ian Woodford at

The School-Based Bicycle Safety Education Program is supported with funding from Washington’s Climate Commitment Act. The CCA supports Washington’s climate action efforts by putting cap-and-invest dollars to work reducing climate pollution, creating jobs, and improving public health. Information about the CCA is available at

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Hundreds of Students in NCESD Region Receive Free Bicycles through Statewide Bike Education Program