"Never, ever, ever, ever run back to the bus"

By Taylor Hemness - bio | email
Posted by Elizabeth Thomas – email

MORRIS COUNTY, TX (KLTV) – Earlier this month, the community of Naples in Morris County was rocked when a four-year-old girl was killed after being run over by a school bus.

After that tragedy, a teacher at another school district decided to start a class to teach kids how to be safe around the bus.

Linda White remembers hearing about the death of little Patience Alderman, "I was coming back from Texarkana, and I got a text on my phone about the child from Naples there, and I just had to do something."

Linda may be the perfect person to do something; after all, she's a life skills teacher at West Elementary in Daingerfield. And, she's a bus driver.

The little girl in Naples was killed after she left the bus, but turned and ran back towards it. She tripped and fell under the rear tire.

In Linda's lesson, the kids learn that running back to the bus is not an option, "I told them, I said, your notebook will be there tomorrow. If it's not, we can get a new notebook. We can't get a new you."

"Never, ever, ever, ever run back to the bus."

Along with her home-made bus, Linda uses a red "Danger Zone" sign to show the kids where they should never walk. Her students even get to sit in her seat on the bus to understand how hard it is to see.

Linda says her message is catching on, "They pass me in the hall, and they say, 'I'm not going in the danger zone any,' or 'Yesterday I walked out in the safe zone,' or 'I'm never running back to the bus.'"

Anything she can do to make her kids safer, Linda says is worth the effort.

Linda also hopes that the children's parents will continue the bus safety lessons at home.

Related stories:

Copyright 2011 KLTV. All rights reserved.