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Walk in honor of Ruby Bridges on November 18

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Walking to school was an act of great courage for Ruby Bridges

Ruby Nell Bridges Hall is a civil rights activist who took her first steps of courage on November 14, 1960 at the age of six. As desegregation of public schools in the South finally began after the landmark Supreme Court decision in 1954, Ruby was one of the first brave Black American students to attend what had been an all-white school. On her walk to school each day, she faced taunts and angry crowds.

Ruby Bridges Walk to School Day is on November 18, 2020. While many students are learning remotely right now, we encourage you to take a walk in Ruby’s honor. 

Parents and caregivers: walk with your child, share your participation, and be entered to win a book titled Ruby Bridges Goes to School by Ruby Bridges. We will draw 5 names of participants to be shipped a copy of The Story of Ruby Bridges. Share your walk by 11:59PM Wednesday, November 25, 2020.

Ruby’s walk to school 

Ruby and her mom faced protests and demonstrations every day on her walk to school, yet she persevered. She and her mother walked to school and never missed a day that year. Ruby was the only Black student in her class and her entire school. She ate lunch alone. She went to recess alone. Her only friend in the entire school was her teacher, Barbara Henry.

Here are some great resources to learn more about Ruby:

Your walk in honor of Ruby Bridges 

Take a walk today with your student and talk about the courage it took for Ruby and her mother to walk up the steps of William Frantz Elementary School. They were greeted with threats of violence and slurs every day. 

Discussion questions about Ruby’s courageous walk:

  1. How do you feel on this walk today?
  2. How do you think Ruby felt on her walk to school on November 14, 1960?
  3. Where can we walk today?
  4. Where could Ruby walk then?
  5. How can we continue in Ruby’s footsteps?
  6. How do we show respect and equal treatment for all?
  7. What steps can we take every day to continue equality in our own community?

Be sure to share that you took a walk in honor of Ruby to be entered in our drawing for a book written by Ruby herself. Share your walk by 11:59PM Wednesday, November 25, 2020.

Ruby and her mother, Lucille Bridges, exiting Ruby’s school. Lucille Bridges passed away on November 10, 2020.

The San Francisco Safe Routes to School Partnership

Walk San Francisco, which leads Walk & Roll to School Day each year, is proud to be part of the San Francisco Safe Routes to School Partnership. The Partnership was created to help make walking and bicycling to school safer and more accessible for children, including those with disabilities, and to increase the number of children who choose to walk, bicycle, take public transit, or ride in parental carpools. The Partnership focuses on underserved schools and communities. Learn more about the San Francisco Safe Routes to School Partnership.

Questions? Contact Vernon Haney, Family & Schools Coordinator at Walk San Francisco.