NATIONAL SCHOOL BUS SAFETY WEEK
The goal of National School Bus Safety Week is to address the importance of school bus safety. This active and evolving program takes place each year during the third full week in October.
More than 25 million children are transported to and from school on big yellow buses. These school buses provide 10 billion school rides a year. About 500,000 school buses travel the roads each day. Despite the number of miles school buses travel, accidents are infrequent. School buses are considered to be the safest motor vehicles on the road. Even though this is good news, accidents do happen.
Because of school bus accidents, 17,000 children a year end up in the emergency room. School bus crashes also cause about seven fatalities a year. Nineteen children a year are killed getting on or off the bus. These children are usually in the “danger zone” of the bus. The danger zone is 10 feet in front of the bus, 10 feet behind the bus, and 10 feet on either side. These types of fatalities occur when a vehicle illegally passes a stopped school bus.
The week-long observance offers a reminder to all parents, teachers, students, motorists, and school bus operators about the importance of following the law and implementing school bus safety tips. Parents should be able to trust that when their child gets on the school bus, there is no need to worry about their safety. If everyone follows school bus safety rules, every child will stay safe.
HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalSchoolBusSafetyWeek
The highlight of the safety week is the poster contest. Thousands of school districts in over 40 states participate in the poster contest. Submitted artwork must promote school bus safety-related themes and encourage school bus safety. The winner of the poster contest determines the theme for next year’s awareness program.
Previous winners and themes include:
- 2019: My School Bus, The Safest Form of Student Transportation!
- 2018: My Driver, My Safety Hero
- 2017: Stop on Red!
- 2016: Bully Free Zone
National School Bus Safety Week is the perfect time to talk to your child about school bus safety. Tell your child that when getting on and off the bus to always watch for oncoming traffic. While at the bus stop, they should stand at least three giant steps away from the approaching bus. The observance is also a time for motorists to learn and adhere to all the bus stopping laws.
To spread awareness about school bus safety, share #NationalSchoolBusSafetyWeek or #NSBSW on social media.
Educators and Families, visit the National Day Calendar Classroom for ideas and projects that will help you Celebrate Every Day!
NATIONAL SCHOOL BUS SAFETY WEEK HISTORY
National School Bus Safety Week was the result of a letter-writing campaign to President Nixon in 1969. Founded by Dick Fischer, a former school district transportation director in California, the first NSBSW was held in 1970. In 1975, the National Association for Pupil Transportation (NAPT) was founded. The NAPT, along with the National School Transportation Association (NSTA) and National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services (NASDPT), hosts National Bus Safety Week each year.
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