Jeff Cassell, President of SBSC, explained, “As an industry we do a really great job in providing safe school bus transportation, but there is one area we can do a far better job, teaching the students the safe practices when they are in the danger zones around school buses. The reason for this is that in most cases no one takes the responsibility to provide this training. The bus depot has no way to train in a classroom setting. The teachers have enough to focus on in the schools, and parents often assume the school are providing this training. Bottom line, in most instances, they receive only a minimum cursory training by the driver at the start of the school year.”
Jeff added, “Do we really think that students who hear a list of rules read out by a driver from the front of the bus will listen to them, remember them and put them into practice? This is very unlikely, so we need to do a better job, and we have the answer. The programs we have just created for kids in the pre-K to Grade 2 ages have been designed to be presented by the parents. Before the school year starts, the district sends the link to our Student Portal to all the parents or a teacher, recommending they take their child through the age appropriate training program.
The child is then taken through the program, reinforcing the safe practices. These include staying out of the danger zones, never running after the bus, what to do if you drop something, and how to safely cross the street.
We have studied the 123 student fatalities over the last 15 years and in almost every tragedy, had the child acted safely, the accident would have been prevented. The goal of these programs is to teach the students all the safe practices both outside and inside the bus.”
Jeff explained, “We interviewed a group of parents with young children to ascertain the most effective way to influence their kid’s behaviors. We used our findings to create these new programs. For Pre-K to Grade 2, we have two programs, one in animation mode and one with real children. Even though they deliver the same messages, we recommend young children be taken through both.
The link to the Student Portal includes programs for Grades 3 to 5 and grades 6 and above.
It also includes programs on Emergency Evacuation and Bullying & Teasing Prevention.
For a very low cost, each school district will have unlimited access to the Student Portal that can be shared with parents, demonstrating their commitment to the children’s safety. The programs will be available as a yearly subscription.
Alternatively, a teacher or transportation staff could use the Student Portal Link to present these programs to the students.”
Finally, Jeff added, “To my knowledge, nothing like this has ever been available before. This is revolutionary. Danger zone child fatalities have been reducing over the years and we think that the only way to continue this trend is to teach the students their role in staying safe.”
Contact: Jeff Cassell, President, SBSC, 866.275.7272