For Immediate Release: October 23, 2012
JACKSON, Miss. – In Mississippi, more than 5,400 school buses transport more than 450,000 students to and from school each day. That adds up to 54 million miles each year.
These facts highlight the importance of safe transportation for students across the state. Today, the School Bus Safety Task Force and Gov. Phil Bryant encouraged schools and communities to recognize National School Bus Safety Week. Bryant has signed a proclamation calling on the citizens of the state to exercise constant courtesy and caution when near school buses.
Dr. Ben Burnett, Lamar County School District superintendent and chairman of the task force, said the group is committed to changing policies, practices and laws to make roads safer for nearly a half million students. A statewide public awareness campaign and bus training manual changes are a part of the task force’s work.
“The task force is working with the Mississippi Department of Education on developing a school bus safety curriculum for students in grades K-3,” Burnett said. “Our hope is that the Legislature will allow us to present a full comprehensive report to them on our efforts during the upcoming session.
Other members of the School Bus Safety Task Force attended Tuesday’s announcement of National School Bus Safety Week, including Mississippi Highway Patrol Sgt. Johnny Poulos, and Andy and Lori Key, parents of Nathan Key, the inspiration for Nathan’s Law.
Cutline: Gov. Phil Bryant, center, proclaims Oct. 22-26 as National School Bus Safety Week in Mississippi. Joining him for the announcement, from left, Dr. Ben Burnett, Lamar County School District superintendent, Mississippi Highway Patrol Col. Donnell Berry, Lori Key, Andy Key, MHP Commissioner Albert Santa Cruz, MHP Sgt. Johnny Poulos, and Ray Mann, Rankin County Schools transportation director.