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“I like web-based, but it’s best if you still


use it with a teacher.” —Jeff Cassell, School Bus Safety Company


But that hasn’t been the experience everywhere.


Oregon City School District located south of Portland, Or- egon, employs 86 school bus drivers, nearly half of which are over the age of 60, relayed Assistant Transportation Supervisor Kathleen O’Brien. While she noted that the older drivers and even some younger ones initially had challenges with new remote professional development courses that were implemented this spring, she said over the course of the training “they really stepped it up.” Oregon City has been offering training via Google


Classroom, after originally utilizing the district’s Safe- Schools training on topics such as bloodborne pathogens, sexual harassment, and social and emotional learning. O’Brien said the new training started off simple,


with games that tested the employees’ ability to match names of district staff as well as locations inside and around the school bus with their photos. The training


has since evolved to include refresher tests on brake systems and the proper order of conducting pre- and post-trip inspections. The department also posts meet- ing minutes as well as recorded video for later access. More so, O’Brien said the district can regularly check-in with its drivers. In-service training prior to school startup was still being planned at this writing, O’Brien shared. Among the other challenges that lie ahead, she relayed, is getting driver’s licenses certified and re-certified once DMVs fully reopen. She explained that the Oregon Department of Education granted waivers for commercial driver’s licenses but has yet to allow online training to satisfy driver training requirements. “We are hoping ODE loosens the hold a little bit. Oth- erwise, we’ll be really slammed with trying to get classes done [in the fall],” she commented. ●


www.stnonline.com 31


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