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Welcome back, students | IN OUR OPINION
Wednesday is an important day — the first day of school for the Class of 2026, the final stretch on the road to adulthood for the Class of 2014.
We wish our students a year that is productive and successful in every way. You can help make sure it’s a safe one. Be extra cautious when driving, and make sure your children know the safety rules for traveling by bicycle, bus and foot to and from school.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency recommends ...
ON THE SCHOOL BUS
• If your child’s school bus has lap or shoulder seat belts, make sure your child uses one at all times when in the bus.
• Wait for the bus to stop before approaching it.
• Check to see that no other traffic is coming before crossing the street to enter the bus.
• Make sure to always remain in clear view of the bus driver.
IN THE CAR
• All car passengers should wear a seat belt or use an age- and size-appropriate car safety seat or booster seat. Children should ride in a belt-positioning booster seat until the vehicle’s seat belt fits properly (usually when the child reaches about
4 feet 9 inches in height and is between 8 to 12 years of age).
• All children younger than 13 should ride in the rear seat. If you must drive with more children than can fit in the rear seat (when carpooling, for example), move the front-seat passenger’s seat as far back as possible and have the child ride in a booster seat if the seat belts do not fit properly without it.
RIDING A BICYCLE
• Always wear a bicycle helmet.
• Ride on the right, in the same direction as auto traffic.
• Use appropriate hand signals.
• Respect stop signs.
• Wear bright colored clothing to increase visibility.
• Know the “rules of the road.”
WALKING TO SCHOOL
• Make sure your child’s walk to school is on a safe route.
• Be realistic about your child’s pedestrian skills. Because small children can be impulsive and less cautious around traffic, carefully consider whether your child is ready to walk to school without adult supervision.
• Bright-colored clothing will make your child more visible to drivers.
So, to members of the Class of 2026, the Class of 2014 and all classes in between: Good luck. And have a safe and pleasantly memorable 2013-14 school year.