Doug Cook enjoys driving school bus

Today is School Bus Driver Appreciation Day

To recognize the bus drivers who work to safely transport more than 760,000 students to school each day across Minnesota, Gov. Tim Walz proclaimed Wednesday, Feb. 27, School Bus Driver Appreciation Day in the state.

The Minnesota School Bus Operators Association and the Minnesota Association of Pupil Transportation teamed up to create the holiday to encourage school leaders, parents and students to celebrate their bus drivers.

“From rural country roads to city streets and in all kinds of weather conditions, school bus drivers transport our communities’ most precious cargo — our children — to school each day,” MSBOA President Garrett Regan stated in a news release. “School bus driving is an important but often unacknowledged profession, and we are thankful that Gov. Walz has declared Feb. 27 as School Bus Driver Appreciation Day in Minnesota so that we can give bus drivers the recognition they deserve.”

Minnesota State Patrol Lt. Brian Reu reminds drivers to be cautious around school buses and to always stop when a bus driver activates the flashing lights and fully extends the crossing arm.

“While they do their best watching out for our children, it takes every one of us to do our part,” Reu said in a news release.

Thanks to rigorous safety standards for vehicles and drivers, as well as student training efforts, students are nearly eight times safer riding in a school bus than a different vehicle. The school bus driving industry is the largest form of mass transit in Minnesota, and it has reduced its environmental impact through the use of alternative fuels and retrofits on diesel engines.

“School bus drivers are among the most highly trained drivers on the road, and they are a crucial part of our education system,” MAPT President Derrick Agate Sr. stated in a news release. “We hope that Minnesotans help us recognize school bus drivers in their communities on Feb. 27, and that more people consider this rewarding and in-demand profession.”

Springfield Advance-Press

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