The walksafe program: Developing and evaluating the educational component

Gillian Hotz, Anamarie Garces De Marcilla, Khaleeq Lutfi, Amy Kennedy, Pedro Castellon, Robert C. Duncan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Miami-Dade County, FL, has one of the highest numbers of pediatric pedestrian injuries in the country. To respond to this problem, WalkSafe an elementary school-based pedestrian injury prevention program was created. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the 3-day WalkSafe educational curriculum in a high-risk district. METHODS: Sixteen elementary schools were identified and enrolled in the study. Children (n = 10,621) in grades K-5 participated in the WalkSafe program in October 2006. Four of the 16 schools were randomly selected to receive pre-, post-, and 3-month posteducational testing of pedestrian safety knowledge. Teachers (n = 462) were asked to complete teacher surveys to gain feedback about the program. RESULTS: A total of 2,987 tests were collected during the three different testing times. Grades were combined to form groups (K-1), (2-3), and (4-5). Significant differences were observed (p value <0.05) between pre- and posttesting for grades K-1 and 2-3. No significant differences were found between pre- and posttesting for (4-5) and between post- and 3-month testing across all grades (p value >0.05). There were 154 (30%) of the teacher surveys returned. CONCLUSION: The 3-day WalkSafe educational curriculum implemented in a high-risk district was shown to increase the pedestrian safety knowledge of elementary school age children. From recommendations made by teachers and multiple agencies, the modified 3-day program was approved to implement on a yearly basis in all public elementary schools in Miami-Dade County. Further studies will investigate the transfer of knowledge gain to behavioral change among elementary school-aged children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S3-S9
JournalJournal of Trauma - Injury, Infection and Critical Care
Issue numberSUPPL. 3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2009


  • Behavior
  • Children
  • Education
  • Injury prevention
  • Knowledge
  • Pedestrian

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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