School might be out for the summer in Connecticut, but bus drivers from across the state spent the day in class.
The full-time staff at All-Star Transportation participated in a one-day, school bus violence prevention training session on Wednesday.
Gray Ram Tactical, which is based in Missouri, created a hands-on learning experience for the bus drivers. The goal of the training session was designed to identify potentially dangerous scenarios and keep students safe while on the roads.
"Calling it in, so I may not just jump in the bus and get the bus and get the heck out of there, but certainly inclined to let him off like you did, because we got these other students, just as important if not more important than he is,” Eric Keim with Gray Ram Tacitcal said.
The program spent the day going over different situations, designed to see how they would react and what they should do if put in a potentially dangerous situation with kids on board.
Scenarios included a gun onboard a school bus, fights outside, parents trying to get on board, a student with a weapon and even a hijacking.
"These drivers are out there driving these roads, going through these neighborhoods every day,” Brenda Bass with All Star Transportation said. “When they see something that isn't normal, they're reporting it to us, but now we're taking it to the next step."
After breaking into groups, they went over a number of situations.
"If you got a little kindergartener standing there with a pencil, would that change that if it's a high school senior standing there with a gun? Yes it would,” Keim said.
All-Star said right now trainings like Wednesdays isn't widespread. They brought in the safety consulting firm for their employees after first seeing them at a bus conference. And while they don't want to be alarmists, they're quick to point out, every little bit of training helps.
"I think it's real important to get ahead of it because every day on the news something is going on and it gets closer and closer to home,” Leslie Sheldon/All Star Transportation said. "Today is about getting our employees more prepared for here everyday life that they face with the world being a little crazy right now."
The plan is to have managers and supervisors pass on the information and train those seasonal drivers in time for the new school year.
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