Schools across North Carolina joined in the celebration of LOVE THE BUS, sponsored by the American School Bus Council (ASBC). “Love the Bus” is a national educational campaign designed to raise awareness of the hundreds of thousands of men and women who safely drive more than 25 million students to and from school each day. The ASBC provides education about the importance and safety of school bus transportation.
Among the members of the ASBC are two North Carolinians: Derek Graham, DPI transportation section chief (representing the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services) and Ken Hedgecock of Thomas Built Buses. For more information on the American School Bus Council and Love the Bus, click on the following links.
Following are a sample of the kinds of events held throughout the state
Craven County Schools provided a “sweet reminder” for all its bus drivers and driver supervisors to show appreciation for their service. The note pads with chocolate were placed on each bus on Valentines' Day. According to transportation director Becton Broughton, “I must say the response was great, the drivers and supervisors called and let us know how much they appreciated being remembered.”
In Charlotte/Mecklenburg Schools, several campuses participated in Love the Bus, celebrating with cards, candy, breakfast and more. At South Charlotte Middle School students greeted the bus drivers with Valentine’s Day greetings/posters and presented the drivers with cards and candy.
In Wayne County, Brogden Primary and Brogden Middle School’s bus drivers were honored during a Valentine breakfast of appreciation in conjunction with “Love the Bus” week. Students also showed their gratitude by giving cards and small tokens of appreciation. North Carolina Department of Public Instruction’s Transportation Services section donated safety items to the drivers to present to their students in celebration of this event. Pictured below are drivers with transportation director Raymond Smith.
In Pender County, new transportation director Ricky Carter is visiting each school to personally thank school bus drivers for their service. Says Carter, “It seems kind of small…” but the drivers seem to appreciate the acknowledgement .
Cabarrus County celebrated Love the Bus at Weddington Hills Elementary School with an appearance by Buster the Bus, courtesy DPI’s Dr. John Leak. Buster entertained at class assemblies and even got his picture in the paper. Breakfast was provided for drivers as well. Assistant Principal Adam Alderbauch is shown enjoying the festivities (and food!). Drivers were also given Cabarrus County T-Shirts with the Love the Bus logo on the back.
Catawba County Schools transportation department selected a number of our elementary schools to receive the pencils & T Shirts provided by DPI. Kindergarten students signed the school bus safety T-Shirts and then presented them to senior bus drivers. Schools involved were Oxford Elementary, Blackburn Elementary, Tuttle Elementary, St. Stephens Elementary, Sweetwater Elementary, Thornton Elementary (in the Newton Conover district) and Longview Elementary (in Hickory City Schools District).
On Valentines day February 14th, 2008, transportation staff delivered the appreciation certificate from American Bus Council to each regular bus driver in Catawba County Schools along with a box of valentine candy.
Wilson County Schools bus drivers and Mr. Jim Lewis, the Director of Transportation,were on the local television station. To acknowledge the school bus drivers, Mr. Lewis informed the public what an extraordinary person it took to drive a school bus. To this exceptional group driving a school bus was more than just a job to them. Bus drivers really care about the children they transport. The group talked about bus safety. They discussed the number of buses and how many miles they travel in a day. They also spoke about how many students are transported each day. Another topic that was addressed was the requirements and training a person has to go through to become a bus driver. Other subjects included how the parents and the public could make our children’s travel to and from school safer by doing their part. Each school recognized their drivers in individual ways. Students made Valentine cards for their drivers. The transportation department sponsored the recognition for drivers of buses transporting students with special needs, providing a Valentine’s cake.
Winston-Salem/Forsyth County school bus drivers received Valentine cards from the transportation department, as shown below.
At Bladen Lakes Primary School (Bladen County), principal Deborah Bill provided breakfast for their bus drivers and the transportation staff. Buster greeted the students and drivers as they unloaded. Anthony Brisson, bus mechanic for Bladen Lakes, presented his drivers with Buster Tee shirts. Students were given school bus safety pencils. Drivers received valentines from all the children at the school as well as a valentine and box of candy from the transportation staff. Mr. Roland McKoy, Assistant Superintendent was also there to express his appreciation and support for the outstanding job bus drivers do for the county. The other schools in Bladen celebrated Love the Bus with their drivers as well.
Mooresville Graded School District was featured in the Mooresville Tribune
In Nash-Rocky Mount, the Love The Bus festivities are shown here.
Edenton-Chowan Schools held their Love the Bus event at White Oak Elementary School on the “coldest and windiest day of the year!” according to transportation director Billy Nixon. Amanda Goodwin, TIMS/BSIP, went over safety procedures of riding a school bus and each student received a heart to write their Valentine message to their bus driver. Amanda is already planning for next year!