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Empowering Students Through Fun and Fitness with ‘Walk and Roll to School Day

Often in school, the focus is on academic success, but it’s also important to remember that a child’s educational experience is more than just books and homework. At Detroit Merit Charter Academy, Principal Sandra Martin recently offered students a unique way to start the day. It was called “Walk and Roll to School Day,” a day for students to break out their wheels.

"Walk and Roll to School Day" was born out of an email, a simple idea that ignited a spark in Martin.

Mom walking with daughter on roller skates.

"I was sent an email about the day, and it looked like fun,” she explained. “Most of our families drive their students to school, so I thought this would provide an opportunity for our students to do something fun and exercise at the same time."

After that, she put the wheels in motion, inviting the students and their families to take part in the event.

"Parents can't always come to the family nights, but they do bring their students to school each morning."

Student with scooter.

This activity is just one of many that has helped Detroit Merit outperform the local district in all subjects for the last 13 years. “Walk and Roll to School Day” was designed to bridge the gap between home and school, creating an opportunity for parents to participate in a fun school activity and, at the same time, provide students with a creative way to exercise.  

Students could come to school on skates, scooters, or even skateboards!

Student on skateboard.
According to Martin, "The families that participated said their students were really excited about it. One parent said her child insisted they park blocks away from the school so it would be legitimate."

Martin said she plans to make "Walk and Roll to School Day" a regular occurrence and hopes to get even more families involved in this fun fitness event.

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About Detroit Merit Charter Academy
Detroit Merit Charter Academy is a tuition-free, public charter school in Detroit, Michigan, serving students in kindergarten through eighth grade. It is part of the National Heritage Academies network, which includes more than 100 tuition-free, public charter schools serving more than 65,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade across nine states. For more information, visit

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