As students return to school, student safety, especially around school buses, becomes a priority for parents and educators. To increase the importance of obeying traffic laws when near a stopped school bus, the Arkansas Department of Education recently kicked off its annual school bus safety campaign.
Flashing Red. Kids Ahead. is a three-week campaign to remind motorists that it is illegal to pass a stopped school bus whenever its red lights are flashing, as students are getting on and off the bus.
Each day more than 6,000 school buses transport more than a quarter of a million Arkansas students to and from school and school-related activities. As a result of Arkansas Act 2128 of 2005, known as Isaac’s Law, the fines, penalties and punishment for anyone found guilty of illegally passing a stopped school bus were dramatically increased. The legislation was passed in memory of Isaac Brian, an elementary student in the Bryant School District who was killed when a driver illegally passed while students were getting off the bus.
Resources, including tips for parents and a promotional video about school bus safety, are available on the ADE website at http://www.arkansased.gov/divisions/communications/flashing red. kids ahead. The site also includes a sample news release and sample letter to the editor than can be tailored for local school bus safety campaigns.