Center Grove Bus Drivers Use Added Days to Sharpen Skills
GREENWOOD, IN (June 5, 2014)—Bus drivers, mechanics, and even office staff for the Center Grove Community School Corporation (CGCSC) Transportation Department spent the last three days honing their driving skills and learning new techniques for managing students. All are CDL-licensed drivers. The added work days are to make up for days missed due to weather cancellations over the winter.
The 67 drivers and substitute drivers, eight bus monitors, four mechanics, two office staff personnel, one routing coordinator, and one director divided into groups to participate in a road course, basic skills course, pre-trip inspection drill, and special needs bus training, and to learn about student conduct, including rules and policies. Any drivers who were unable to attend will go through a make-up session later this summer.
The basic skills course required parallel parking, offset backing, student drop-off, and student pick-up. The road course included lane changes and stops at railroad tracks. Employees were divided into teams for the pre-trip inspection drill. Each team was assigned a bus that had been set up with several everyday issues they had to find, from a missing gas cap to low tread on a tire. These drills help the trainers know which areas to focus on with future training sessions. They’re planning a future session on the four-point air brake check.
Director of Transportation Rick Pederson says there are hundreds of things that can go wrong on any given bus. “If any one of these problems was found in a real situation that bus would be written up and taken out of service until the problem could be fixed,” he said. “Safety is always our top priority.”
Trainer Jenny Golden has been driving a bus for Center Grove since her son started Kindergarten. He’s now in third grade and she says she still loves the job. “I’ve done a lot of jobs, but this is the most rewarding, said Golden. “Parents trust us with their kids. That’s the most important thing.”