Love the Bus Month Celebrates School Bus Drivers Nationwide

Since 2007, Love the Bus Month has become a national event that is celebrated by school districts and contractors, alike. The event is hosted by the American School Bus Council (ASBC) and reminds the nation of the importance of bus drivers and the impact they have on student lives.



The ASBC held its annual event at Fred Rodgers Magnet Academy in the East Aurora Illinois School District 131 on Feb. 8. The event celebrated yellow school bus safety in that community.

Other school districts and contractors held their own events to honor bus drivers for their contributions. School bus contractor Go Riteway celebrated Love the Bus month at Oak Creek Elementary, in conjunction with Wisconsin School Bus Driver Recognition Week.

“During Wisconsin School Bus Driver Recognition Week, we felt that a Love the Bus event was a great tie-in,” said Rochelle Bast, co-owner and vice chair of Go Riteway Transportation Group. “The Oak Creek-Franklin Joint School District partnered with us and we were able to have elected officials and staff tour one of its newest schools to highlight the latest concepts of learning for today’s students. School bus transportation begins and ends the school day for the children and everyone working together provides a positive framework for life skills and future success for all students.”

The event started at the Go Riteway 10th street terminal, then the participants traveled in a bus to the newly completed Forest Ridge Elementary School in Oak Creek, Wisconsin. The Go Riteway co-owners stressed the importance of school bus driver safety, and using green technology, said Sandra Koehler, compliance director for Association Acumen.


Another school contractor that participated in the event was Transportation South, the Thomas Built school bus dealer for Alabama. In 2009, Transportation South started sponsoring a Love The Bus Luncheon in Pelham, Alabama. Every year, the event features a bluegrass band and the decorating of school buses by a local elementary school. Bus drivers are recognized with gifts and certificates. Alabama’s Bus Driver of the Year is also awarded then.

The Bus Driver of the Year is chosen from local nominations from across the state and selected by the Alabama State Department of Education. This year, Rebecca Suits, a bus driver for Arab City Schools won the award.

“In 2009, Transportation South started sponsoring a Love the Bus Luncheon as a way to celebrate Alabama’s school bus drivers and others who help make sure that students are safely transported to and from school and extracurricular activities,” said Joe Lightsey, a consultant with Transportation South and a retired state director of student transportation with the Alabama State Department of Education. “This is the 10th year that Transportation South has sponsored this event. To date, it remains the only statewide event.”


Kathy Vance, transportation supervisor at Charlotte Public Schools in Michigan, gave all of her bus drivers a #LoveTheBus certificate.

“My drivers are having a great time with this, they are even passing out the coloring pages to kids on the bus,” Vance said.


The Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) celebrated Love the Bus Month at the Texas Association for Pupil Transportation winter conference in League City, Texas.

“As an incentive to have folks stop by our TEEX booth, engage with us and support the #LoveTheBus Month we created a selfie frame as a photo op! I’m pleased to say that it was a great hit,” Laura Shehan, program director, marketing and business development for Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service said.

TEEX also gave out a deck of ‘Safety Tips’ playing cards for those who stopped by their both.

These are only several of the celebrations held across the nation. ASBC encourages school districts and contracts to post their photos on Facebook and Twitter using the #LoveTheBus. Winning posts, based on the number of likes and the meaning behind love the bus, could receive a Visa card of up to $250.

MEDIA GALLERY

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