The Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) has joined with Scholastic, the global children’s publishing, education and media company, on a multi-year educational initiative designed to help educate the next generation of drivers.

Developed for middle school students across the state, the powerful campaign called “Recognizing the Risk” provides students, teachers and parents with valuable resources addressing the dangers of distracted driving and walking.

The program builds upon Georgia DOT’s existing Drive Alert Arrive Alive and See & Be Seen campaigns.

As a result of the collaboration, Georgia teachers are providing their students with a number of classroom activities focused on promoting pedestrian and driver safety by discussing the hazards of texting, headphones and more.

The program enables teachers, students and parents alike to engage in a wide range of collaborative discussions on real-world scenarios to foster responsible and safe alternatives to risky behaviors.

“In 2018, 70 percent of the 1,514 fatalities on Georgia roads occurred as a result of distracted behavior, including 265 fatalities involving pedestrians,” said Russell R. McMurry, Commissioner, Georgia Department of Transportation. “Georgia DOT is proud to partner with Scholastic in this crucial outreach program to inspire positive social behaviors among Georgia’s youth well before they obtain their driver’s license and get behind the wheel. 

“Through the ‘Recognizing the Risk’ educational program, Scholastic and Georgia DOT encourage students to learn about the risks of distracted walking and driving through the lens of evaluating state-specific statistics and data,” said Ann Amstutz Hayes, Senior Vice President, Scholastic National Partnerships. “Our goal is for students to become advocates for safer walking and driving practices within their communities while supporting educators in their teaching of statewide standards.”