Making sure their child is safe at school, as well as traveling to and from school, is tantamount for parents. Below are a few safety tips for parents, kids and motorists regarding school safety.
Back-to-School Safety Checklist provided by the National Safety Council:
Whether children walk, ride their bicycle or take the bus to school, it is extremely important that they take proper safety precautions. Here are some tips to make sure your child safely travels to school.
Walking to school
- Review your family’s walking safety rules.
- Walk on the sidewalk, if one is available.
- When on a street with no sidewalk, walk facing the traffic.
- Before you cross the street, stop and look left, right and left again to see if cars are coming.
- Never dart out in front of a parked car.
- Make eye contact with drivers before crossing the street
- Practice walking to school with your child.
- Cross streets at crosswalks when available.
Riding a bicycle to school
- Make sure your child always wears his/her helmet when leaving the house.
- Make sure helmet is fitted and secured properly.
- Teach your children the rules of the road.
- Ride on the right side of the road with traffic, and in a single file.
- Come to a complete stop before crossing the street.
- Walk bike across street.
Riding the bus to school
- Go to the bus stop with your child to teach them the proper way to get on and off the bus.
- Make sure your children stand six feet away (or 3 giant steps) from the curb.
- If your child and you need to cross the street in front of the bus, walk on the side of the road until you are 10 feet ahead of the bus.
- You always should be able to see the bus driver, and the bus driver always should be able to see you.
Many school-related injuries are completely preventable. Follow these steps to ensure your child’s safety at school.
Preventing backpack-related injuries
- Choose a backpack for your child carefully. It should have ergonomically designed features to enhance safety and comfort.
- Don’t overstuff a backpack; it should weigh no more than 10 to 20 percent of your child’s body weight.
- For example: a child that weighs 60 pounds should carry a backpack no heavier than 12 pounds.
- Ask your children to use both straps when wearing their backpack to evenly distribute the weight on their shoulders.
Preventing playground-related injuries
- Encourage your child to use playgrounds with a soft surface. Avoid playgrounds with concrete surfaces, as they are too hard if your child falls.
- Children under the age of four should use climbing equipment with assistance and adult supervision, and watch older children when they’re climbing, especially on monkey bars.
School Bus Safety Tips Provided by TxDOT
More than a million children and teens depend on buses to get them safely to and from the more than 9,000 Texas schools every day. They also depend on motorists to know the law and drive safely around school buses.
Texas School Bus Law
- Stop for flashing red lights on a school bus, regardless of which direction you're headed.
- Continue your trip once the bus has moved, the flashing lights stop flashing or the bus driver signals it's okay to pass.
- Violations can lead to a $1,000 fine.
Safety Tips for Motorists
- Obey the posted speed limit.
- Fines double in school zones.
- Keep an eye on children gathered at bus stops.
- Watch for children who might dart across the street to catch the bus.
Tips for Students
Respect your school bus driver and follow these rules:
- Stand far back when you are waiting for the bus.
- Sit still so the driver can pay attention to the road.
- Look both ways if you have to cross the street after getting off the bus, or wait for the driver to signal it's safe to cross the street.
Need More Information? Call (512) 416-3175 for more information.
For additional school safety tips, visit the CDC website here.