Did you know that riding a bus is the safest way for children to get to and from school? According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, school buses are approximately 70 times safer than passenger cars and 10 times safer than walking.
Parents can help make the bus riding experience even safer. Just as you may remind your child about appropriate classroom behavior at the beginning of the school year, it’s also important to review safe school bus behavior.
Here are six things parents can encourage their child to do:
1. Stand Back.
Bus drivers have limited visibility within the 10-foot radius of the school bus. Keep your child in view by teaching them to stay 10 giant steps away from the outside of the bus at all times. Make it fun by practicing in your own driveway or at the bus stop!
2. Pay Attention.
Watching videos or texting friends may help pass the time at the bus stop, but it’s important kids look up, take out the ear buds and be aware of their surroundings. Encourage children to keep technology in their backpacks.
3. Be Patient.
If you have a natural born line leader or school enthusiast, they may have the urge to rush to the bus. Teach your child to be still until the bus completely stops, wait for the bus driver’s all-clear signal and give their friends plenty of room as they come on board. As an additional precaution, tell your child to also look both ways for traffic before approaching the bus.
First Student’s Safety Dog Says video is a fun way to share these tips with your child. Watch it together and get the school year off to the safest start!
Corey Huntsberger is Senior Location Manager in Cincinnati for First Student. As the leading school transportation solutions provider in North America, First Student completes five million student journeys each day, moving more passengers than all U.S. airlines combined. Corey encourages Cincinnati Family readers to explore the Parent Resources available on First Student’s website (firststudentinc.com/resources).