Whether your child is riding the bus for the first time, or has been riding for years, it is important for parents to reinforce good bus riding behaviors at home. And there are a few little things parents can do to better ensure their child’s safety. Parents, please pay attention to the following tips.
- Check your child’s clothing for loose draw strings or other items that might be caught in handrails or doors, like scarves, belts, and other loose clothing. Backpacks should fit snugly against your child’s body.
- Assure your child that you won’t be upset if they leave something on the bus or dropped under the bus. Too often children run back to the bus because they dropped or forgot something. Unfortunately, the driver may not see them, and they could be injured.
- Remind your child that the bus driver is in charge of the bus, and they should follow the driver’s instructions. Good behavior is necessary for a safe ride for everyone on the bus. Work with your child to support good behavior on school buses.
- Arrive five to ten minutes before the bus is supposed to arrive at the stop. Many children are injured as they run to catch up to a moving bus.
- If your child must meet the bus in the dark (either mornings or evenings), have your child wear bright clothing so they are seen.
- Don’t buy your child yellow outerwear. Yellow blends in with the color of the school bus, making it harder for the driver and other motorists to differentiate between the bus and your child.
- Remind your child that it is important to stand five giant steps (10 feet) from the road while waiting for the bus. Have them practice five giant steps.
Bonus: Another way you can help students in your community stay safe
Consider becoming a school bus driver. If your community is facing school bus driver shortages (and most of them are), becoming a school bus driver is one of the best things you can do. You’ll provide consistency and a happy face for the students on your route.
When schools don’t have enough drivers, the routes get filled with office staff, mechanics, and charter drivers. Students on those routes don’t get the benefit of the consistency of seeing the same driver every day, someone who gets to know them over the course of the year.
The benefit to you is a great part-time job that works around your child’s schedule. Plus the opportunity to bring your younger children on the bus with you and not having to pay for daycare. If you would like to learn more, please visit our school bus driver page.