Back-to-School Safety

As summer winds down, it will soon be time for kids to head back to school. Whether your children walk, ride bicycles, ride the bus or drive to school, it’s important that they get to and from school safely. To help them do just that, we’re sharing some top safety tips to practice and keep in mind!

Walking to School

If your child is walking to school, make sure they know to always stay on the sidewalk and look both ways before crossing the road. If no sidewalk exists, they should stay near the edge of the road and walk facing oncoming traffic. A good way to help your child learn these rules is to practice walking with your child to school, so they can be aware of what safety measures to practice. 

Biking to School 

When riding a bicycle to school, it’s important for your child to understand the rules of biking on the road. This includes things like riding single-file on the right side of the road, coming to a complete stop before crossing a street and knowing how to signal with their hands before making any turns. They should also always wear a helmet for protection and bright colors so other cars can see them. 

Riding the Bus

For those who ride the bus to school, knowing how to safely enter and exit the bus is very important. Make sure your child waits at least six feet away from the curb as the bus approaches so they aren’t at risk of an accident. If the bus has seat belts, the child should always be buckled. When unloading from the bus, children should not stand up until the bus has come to a complete stop. To help engrain these safe habits into your child’s routine, you should go to the bus stop and teach them the proper way to get on and off the bus.

Driving to School 

If you are picking up your child from school or if you have a new driver who will be driving themselves, follow these safety tips to avoid pedestrian-related accidents. Don’t block crosswalks and always yield to pedestrians who are using them. Never pass a bus that is loading or unloading children and give yourself at least a 10-foot gap between your car and the bus, so that children may safely walk between. Finally, observe school zone speed limits and any drop-off or pick-up lines, loading times or other procedures. 

Oklahoma Farm Bureau’s Safety Services Division offers free safety programs that include school bus safety, bike safety and a defensive driving course for new drivers. If you are interested in hosting one of these programs in your local school or community, visit the Safety Services Division page or ask your local OKFB agent for more information.