Environment Minister Mark H Durkan has ensured that the road safety calendar has gone through the presses in preparation for the new school term.
Pupils from Ballyhenry Primary School accompanied Mr Durkan to Nicholson Bass print works in Mallusk to see at first hand the road safety calendar coming off the press.
Environment Minister Mark H Durkan said: “Educating children and influencing attitudes and behaviours towards road safety is vital; and the first step towards achieving this is to instil good road user attitudes and behaviours in young people. What is learnt and put into practice at a young age forms the basis of behaviour in later life.
There are three versions of the calendar; early, middle and upper years; and every nursery and primary school classroom in Northern Ireland will be provided with a copy to use and display on the wall.
All three calendars show age appropriate photographs and road safety messages with a discussion note for the teacher. All aspects of road safety, including car safety, pedestrian safety and cycling safety are covered in a weekly message.
The calendar has recently been revamped with the addition of Hattie a friend for the existing road safety mascot Skooter. The new look calendar was Highly Commended at the recent NICCY Commissioners Participants Awards.
A survey of schools has shown that teachers and pupils make good use of the calendar and love the characters, local photographs and discussion notes.
Mr Durkan added: “The calendar is now in its 43rd year of production and during that time it has helped generations of children stay safe on our roads. As children turn the pages of the new calendar and read messages we hope that they will remember the importance of staying safe. One death is one too many. We need to ensure that we all work towards being safer road users.”