The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is responsible for analyzing school bus-related traffic crashes and developing countermeasures to reduce the frequency and severity of these incidents. Each state requires school bus drivers to complete initial classroom and behind-the-wheel certification training. However, NHTSA has identified the need for a special in-service training program for school bus drivers in both large and small school districts across the country. This training program would review critical safety issues and provide strategies and techniques drivers can use to reduce the risk of death and injuries for their passengers.
Through a meeting with a group of traffic safety experts from NHTSA, GP Strategies™ determined the course development needs. A modular format was selected, with lessons that can be offered in blocks of 40 to 75 minutes within existing in-service training schedules. NHTSA also identified a need for a separate booklet for local pupil transportation supervisors to help them support the School Bus Drivers In-Service Safety Series. We developed a detailed content outline, style sheets, and cover/layout designs for the Instructor Guide and the booklet. A draft Instructor Guide, overhead transparencies, participant handouts, and Administrator’s Guide were developed. A draft booklet was developed, briefly describing each module and giving additional resources and suggestions for how the pupil transportation supervisor could enhance what the drivers were learning. Draft materials were revised and pilot materials were prepared. We observed four pilot tests; each four-hour pilot test offered different modules so that each module was tested once. After the pilot was completed, summary reports were prepared
and final versions of the materials were completed.