The Cyr Foundation for Excellence in School Transportation has launched a new educational program aimed at providing useful information and training for school bus drivers in New York State. The Cyr Foundation is offering the program in cooperation with the New York Association for Pupil Transportation and its members.
Cyr Foundation President, Karin Skarka, a principal in the Shenendehowa Central School District noted: “This program is designed to provide a training newsletter each month during the school year and a 15-minute training video six times during the school year on topics of interest and importance to the vital work of school bus drivers. The Foundation believes that there is always a need for more information and training opportunities for school bus drivers. We are pleased to offer this initiative to help meet that need.”
The first issue of “IN THE DRIVERS’ SEAT” was released today to school bus drivers in nearly 60 school districts across the state. The first issue deals with the realities of the first few weeks of school and with the critical importance of the Pre-Trip school bus inspection. The newsletter and videos will be produced under an agreement with the Syracuse-based Pupil Transportation Safety Institute (PTSI).
NYAPT President, David Christopher, said that “NYAPT is impressed with this new program initiative from our partners at the Cyr Foundation and we hope that an increasing number of school districts and operators will sign on for the newsletters and videos. What a great way to get new and interesting information to our drivers. They are a critical part of our work and this is going to be a welcome addition to our education efforts.”
Future issues will deal with student behavior and bullying on school buses as well as the idling of school buses and the dangers associated with motorists illegally passing school buses. School districts and school bus operators can still subscribe to the program and receive the newsletter and videos for the balance of the 2011-2012 school year.
Cyr Foundation Executive Director, Peter Mannella, noted that “The newsletter will not supplant the rigorous training provided to school bus drivers under state regulations through the Education Department. It is designed to provide perspectives on the day-to-day operations of the school bus and the kinds of current issues and needs that bus drivers face in the performance of their duties. These men and women are fiercely dedicated to the safety of the 2.3 million children who ride yellow buses every day and we are equally dedicated to helping them do the very best job possible for those children.”
Kathy Furneaux, Executive Director of PTSI, said that “PTSI is delighted to have this opportunity to work with the Cyr Foundation and NYAPT on this important education initiative. We are committed to the safety of our children and believe that this effort will contribute to their safety.”
The Cyr Foundation is a 501-c-3 non-profit foundation that was formed by and with the New York Association for Pupil Transportation to carry out educational and public promotional activities relating to school bus safety. The Cyr Foundation was named in honor of Dr. Frank Cyr who is referred to as the “Father of the Yellow School Bus” and who was a New Yorker.