Antwerp, Paulding and Wayne Trace schools will join other schools and communities to recognize National School Bus Safety Week, Oct. 18-22.

The national theme this year is 1 Bus + 1 Driver = a BIG Impact on Education.

The big yellow school bus has become the epitome of education in our country. Often we take for granted the benefit of this service, even while school and transportation staff continue to focus on maximizing safety and efficiency.

More than 800,000 Ohio students ride on school buses each day, and nearly 15,000 bus drivers, mechanics, secretaries and supervisors statewide are dedicated to providing safe transportation for Ohio children.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) explained that students are about 70 times more likely to get to school safely when taking a school bus instead of traveling by car.

This year’s national campaign is focused on reminding how important school buses are to all children, parents and communities for providing equal learning opportunities.

School bus safety is the first priority for children. Ohio law requires motorists to stop clear of the school bus until the bus driver cancels the red lights and the bus begins to move.

“Ensuring the safety of our students is crucial,” is the message from Paulding County superintendents and Paulding County law enforcement. “We are training our bus drivers to be cautious, but we need help from parents to make sure children remain alert and mindful of good safety practices when walking to their bus stop or to school.”

Each school’s transportation department offers the following tips to remind your child while getting on and off the bus:

• Get to the bus stop in plenty of time.

• Wait at your driver designated place of safety.

• Take 10 giant steps away from the bus when unloading.

• Always follow the driver’s directions for how to cross the street.

• Be alert to traffic and look both ways.

• If you must cross the street, always cross in front of the bus.

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