York youngsters took part in a whole school sponsored bike ride.

Pupils from York Steiner School in Fulford joined for the annual event, cycling 14 miles.

Since 2000, every child in the school, from five to 14 years, has taken part in the ride to raise money for the Waldorf One World project (WOW) which supports underprivileged children. So far, they have raised over £40,000.

Rachael Maskell, MP for York Central, was present for the cycle to cheer on the students.

She said: “It was heart-warming to see a school where every child is setting off on a cycling adventure - enjoying the outdoors, being very active and of course, learning how much fun it is to explore our lovely area on a bicycle.”

York Press: Rachael Maskell MP and York Steiner School head teacher, Ruth Crabtree with banner bearers at the start of the cycleRachael Maskell MP and York Steiner School head teacher, Ruth Crabtree with banner bearers at the start of the cycle (Image: York Steiner School)

The school provides learning based on the ideas of 20th-century philosopher and reformer Rudolf Steiner and offers age-appropriate teaching based on the needs of each child, without the use of SATs, grades or standardised testing.

It is known for its green principles where the children have regular outdoor lessons and a gardening teacher, manage an allotment and where most parents and children walk or cycle to school.

"I know York Steiner School holds green principles at the core of its curriculum and focuses deeply on sustainable practice, but to see a whole school cycling and even better, to have so many parents involved with the ride is fantastic,” added Ms Maskell.

Head teacher Ruth Crabtree said: “It was wonderful to welcome Rachael Maskell to our school today because she was so delighted by what we do here.

“As a cyclist herself she knows just how beneficial it is for our children to be learning the independence that comes from cycling, being active and getting outside.

"It also empowers children and builds confidence and resilience and that is at the heart of our school ethos.”

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Sam Jones of national cycling charity Cycling UK added: “York Steiner School are showing the art of the possible and setting an example other schools can and should follow.

“Active pupils are more alert pupils which is great for the classroom. Exercise is also so important for their mental and physical wellbeing and has the added benefit during a fuel crisis of not costing a penny.”

This year the school will donate the money they raise to the Jardim Do Cajuero School in Brazil where most of the children come from disadvantaged backgrounds.

British Cycling’s cycling delivery manager, Anthony Gill, said: “It’s great to see the whole school (taking) part. Well done to everyone involved.”

Last March York Steiner School received the second highest rating by Ofsted of ‘Good’ across all areas of activity.