RALEIGH – Students at about 80 elementary schools in North Carolina are scheduled to walk or bike to school to celebrate a global effort aimed at building awareness of the benefits of those exercises.

The N.C. Department of Transportation says the activities associated with International Walk to School Day on Wednesday include one-day celebrations and months-long activities such as safety awareness campaigns and health and wellness promotions.

NCDOT’s Safe Routes to School program and Walk to School events have multiple goals. Among them is creating safer routes for walking and bicycling and emphasizing the importance of issues such as increasing physical activity among children, pedestrian safety and building connections between families, schools and the broader community.