District Administration August 2017 - Cover2

SPONSORED CONTENT

Dennis R. Maple,
President,
First Student, Inc.

Keeping children safe by building
a safety-focused workforce
First Student promotes safety as a core value for both employees and communities
How do you build a workforce culture centered around
safety?
School bus drivers carry the nation's most important assets:
our children. And with the types and numbers of decisions
school bus drivers make daily, drivers must make safety
their core value. With more than 25 million children riding
school buses each day, First Student safety teams focus
on interactively bringing safety to the forefront through
discussion, engagement and positive reinforcement. That's
a key part of what we ask our executive and management
teams to do: foster safety development and personal
responsibility. Safety must be a personal core value from
the CEO to school bus drivers. For districts running their
own transportation operation, it's no different. Safety
must be the core focus, whether it's a superintendent
implementing a districtwide positive behavior management
system in the classroom and on the bus, or a principal
reminding a child to hold the rail as they ascend the school
bus stairs, or a teacher thanking a teenager for minding the
school's parking lot speed limit. "It takes a village" when it
comes to our students' safety, we cannot cut corners.
What kind of safety conversations reinforce good
behaviors?
First Student partners with Aubrey Daniels International,
using its "Touchpoints" to discuss safety based on
observations. Aubrey Daniels International is a leader in
behavior-based safety. We target conversations around
positively reinforcing those safety-critical behaviors such as
obeying speed limits, observing the last step, encouraging
three-point contact and others. Recognizing good behaviors
gives team members chances for coachable moments
regarding behaviors that fall short of our safety expectations.

How do you bring parents and communities into your
safety culture?
I'm really proud of the work we've done in this area.
Many parents come to Safety Dog Bus Tour events and
are amazed, in a good way, at how school buses have
changed over the years. School buses are 70 times
safer than cars, according to the National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration and that's due to the good
work the industry has done to make school buses the
safest vehicles on the road. We speak to parents and
PTAs about how their actions at home, and on the road,
make for a safer community as a whole. Because of our
company's dedication to safety, the National Safety
Council granted us the Green Cross for Safety Award®.
We're very proud of that, because we work hard not only
to make our own company safer, but to inform the public
so they can operate more safely in their community.
Talk about the culture of safety during an emergency.
Training regarding emergencies revolves around risk
assessment, security and response. Emergency drills
with drivers focus on assessing situations, securing the
environment, then responding safely and appropriately.
Evacuation plans are discussed with drivers, who take
into account students' abilities, mobility devices and
layout of buses. Our executive and management teams
also participate in local and regional drills. Assessing
risks and developing actions before any emergency
makes our response targeted and safety-focused. We
transport more students on our buses each day than
all domestic airlines carry passengers combined, so
establishing a safety culture from the top down is not an
option, but an imperative.

For more information, visit: www.firststudentinc.com
View, comment, share this story online at DAmag.me/safe


http://www.firststudentinc.com http://www.firststudentinc.com http://www.DAmag.me/safe

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of District Administration August 2017

District Administration August 2017 - Cover1
District Administration August 2017 - Cover2
District Administration August 2017 - 1
District Administration August 2017 - 2
District Administration August 2017 - 3
District Administration August 2017 - 4
District Administration August 2017 - 5
District Administration August 2017 - 6
District Administration August 2017 - 7
District Administration August 2017 - 8
District Administration August 2017 - 9
District Administration August 2017 - 10
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