School Safety Tips

Every year thousands of kids head back to school, which means there are hazards in school zones and on roadways. Many children walk to school, so drivers need to be especially aware of pedestrians. It's also a good time to review important safety tips with your children.

School Safety Tips for Parents and Kids

Encourage students to do the following:

  • Arrive at the bus stop a few minutes early so you won't have to run across the road or rush to catch the bus.
  • Stay away from the curb while waiting for the bus.
  • Wait until the school bus has stopped all traffic before stepping out onto the road. Never run after the school bus if it has already left the bus stop.
  • Don't push getting on or off the school bus. Be patient and wait your turn.
  • Many buses have a yellow bar that swings out from the front of the bus, but if not, remember to walk at least 10 feet in front of the bus when crossing so that the school bus driver can see you.
  • Listen to crossing guards who monitor the traffic outside of school zones. A driver who fails to follow the instructions of a crossing guard could face a fine according to the school safety laws in Pennsylvania.
  • Walk in places where there are sidewalks if at all possible. If you need to walk on a road without sidewalks, walk on the left-hand side of the road facing traffic. Stay as far away from the road as possible, and walk in a single-file road.
  • Wear bright or light-colored clothing in the evening to help stay visible, including at dusk. Remember that it gets dark more quickly as it becomes autumn.
  • Students should keep away from parked cars or other objects that may block them from view.
  • When the school bus is moving, always stay in your seat. Never put your head, arms or hands out of the window.
  • Don't play with the emergency exits, and don't block them with backpacks or bags. If there's an emergency, listen to the driver and follow instructions.
  • If you leave something on the bus or drop something on the ground near the bus, don't go back for it.

School Safety Tips for Drivers

  • Listen to the 15-minute speed limit in school zones. If you're caught speeding in a school zone, you could be penalized with points on your license and hefty fines.
  • Always stop for school buses that are loading or unloading students – it's the law.
  • Look for children running between parked cars, or if a tree or fence is blocking your view. Don't expect students to pay attention to their surroundings.
  • Follow all school safety laws.

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