Preparing Your Child to Ride the School Bus

When it comes to your child’s first time riding to school on their own, they may have some school bus anxiety. Let’s be honest — you probably do, too. Preparing your child for the school bus can be a fun and exciting experience instead of a daunting one, though, if you follow some important steps from day one:


  • Talk to them: Your child might be worried about different issues than you were expecting. Explain information you find to your children, and let them know they need to be respectful of the rules and other riders every single day.


  • Take a bus tour: Many school districts offer an orientation so first-time riders can board the bus, look around, learn to use seat belts, ask any questions they have and more.


  • Visit the bus stop: Find out exactly where your bus stop is and make sure your child is familiar and comfortable there. They should understand bus stop etiquette and safety like staying aware of traffic, crossing only in front of the bus, alerting the driver before picking something up that dropped nearby and staying far enough away for the driver to maintain a visual.


  • Review bus safety rules: Different drivers may have different preferences, but a few basic ground rules should always apply. These include staying seated during vehicle movement, facing forward in the seats, talking quietly and keeping all parts inside the bus at all times. Find out if your district offers school bus safety and rule guides.


  • Meet the driver: It’s a good idea for your child to go through personal introductions with the driver so they feel comfortable to speak up about bullying or other issues. This will also make the driver more likely to approach you with concerns.


  • Get a buddy: Having a sibling or friend stay at the bus stop or even sit with your child on the bus is a good way to help them feel safe throughout the experience, at least until they feel okay on their own.


  • Help choose a good seat: Some drivers assign seats, but many allow children to decide for themselves. If your kid has school bus anxiety, it’s often a good idea to have them choose a seat toward the front so they can be closer to the driver.


  • Follow the bus: If, after going over everything, your child still feels unsafe or anxious about riding the bus, try following it to school for the first day or so. Knowing you’re nearby can help kids settle into the routine and feel safe before they make the journey on their own.


  • Check in: Talking to your children and the bus driver about their experience on a regular basis can help you catch and eliminate potential problems right away. Make sure your child knows they can talk to you and the driver any time they need to.


If you want to learn more about school buses, or you’re looking for safe, quality buses for rent or sale, contact Rohrer Bus today!