For Immediate Release
October 16, 2006
Illinois observes National Bus Safety Week, Oct.
This Year’s Theme Highlights
Pedestrian Safety for Riders Nationwide
SPRINGFIELD – As part of National Bus Safety Week,
Oct. 15-21, Illinois is joining school districts statewide
and school bus industry officials nationwide in stressing
the importance of school bus safety and education.
“Although school buses are the safest way for
students to get to and from school, we always want to
minimize any risk—no matter how small—of
our students getting injured,” said State Superintendent
of Schools Randy Dunn. “By observing School Bus
Safety Week throughout Illinois, we have the opportunity
to call attention to the fact that our students are at
the most risk especially when they are getting on or
off the school bus.”
Celebrated the third week of October each year, School
Bus Safety Week promotes awareness and education on the
local and state level through poster and speech contests,
school bus safety community toolkits and events. School
districts throughout Illinois will be hosting activities
for parents, children and teachers to highlight the importance
of school bus safety both on and off the school bus.
The theme for School Bus Safety Week 2006 – I
See the Driver – The Driver Sees Me – emphasizes
the importance and benefits of school bus driver training
and encourages students across the country to obey school
bus safety rules while waiting at the bus stop and getting
on and off the school bus each day.
In Illinois, more than 1.1 million students ride the
school bus daily. Across the nation, 25 million children
ride the school bus each day. Nationwide, an average
of 33 school-age children die in school-bus-related traffic
crashes each year. Most of the children killed are pedestrians,
five to seven years old.
School Bus Safety Week was established in 1966 by the
National Association of Pupil Transportation, National
Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation
Services National School Transportation Association and
supported by the NHTSA. The goal is to educate students,
parents and the motoring public about the safety of our
nation’s children who are transported daily on
yellow school buses. This week also recognizes the hard
work and dedication of school professionals, especially
the school bus drivers who ensure a safe journey for
our children each and every day.
The American School Bus Council offers the following
tips for school bus riders:
- Be alert to traffic. Check both ways for cars
before stepping off the bus.
- Make eye contact with the bus driver, and wait
for the bus driver’s signal before crossing the
- Walk in front of the bus; never walk behind
the bus to cross the street.
- While waiting for the bus, stay in a safe place
away from the street.
- Before leaving the sidewalk,
look for the flashing lights.
- Never go under the bus to retrieve something you’ve
For more information about bus safety and School Bus
Safety Week, visit ISBE’s school bus safety section
online at http://www.isbe.net/funding/html/bus_safety.htm;
or the National Association of Pupil Transportation’s
web site at www.napt.org.