Fort Wayne Community Schools will start the 2020-21 school year with 29 school buses equipped with stop arm cameras, one more tool to assist in reducing the number of stop arm violations that occur.
Each day in Allen County, nearly 200 school bus stop-arm violations occur. Last year, FWCS joined with East Allen County Schools, Northwest Allen County Schools, Southwest Allen County Schools and Parkview Health Trauma Services to launch Slow. Stop. Stay. The public service campaign was designed to educate motorists on the law regarding stop arm violations, as well as the danger to students when stop arms are ignored.
“We are pleased to be able to add stop arm cameras to our newest buses, giving us one more way to track violations,” said Frank Jackson, FWCS Transportation Director. “Our bus drivers have been diligent in reporting violations, but writing down details of a violation can be difficult when they are also managing students entering the bus.”
FWCS will work with the Fort Wayne Police Department and the Allen County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office to determine if and how the footage from the buses can be used to enforce the law.
Local law enforcement agencies this week are beginning a special enforcement campaign focusing on stop arm violations, speed violations in school zones and disregarding the school crossing guards.
“The Fort Wayne Police Department would like to remind all drivers that with schools starting back this week we would like you to please look out for all our kids. Be mindful of school buses on the roadways, as well as children walking to and from school,” said Sgt. Sofia Rosales-Scatena, Public Information Officer for the Fort Wayne Police Department. “Remember, you must stop for school buses with flashing arms extended. Know the rules on when to stop for a school bus on a roadway. We will be out there enforcing stop arm violations, and there will be no warnings. It’s important for the safety of our children, and it’s the law.”
The Slow. Stop. Stay. Campaign will continue through the 2020-21 school year, with frequent reminders to motorists to pay attention to school buses transporting students to and from school. Fort Wayne Community Schools welcomes students back to the classroom Thursday, Aug. 13.
With nearly 30,000 students, Fort Wayne Community Schools is one of the largest school districts in Indiana. FWCS proudly allows families to choose any of its 50 schools through its successful school-choice program creating diversity in each school, including some with more than 75 languages spoken. FWCS offers seven magnet schools focusing on areas such as science and math, communication, fine arts or Montessori at the elementary and middle school level. In high school, students can choose from the prestigious International Baccalaureate program, Project Lead the Way or New Tech Academy as well as other rigorous academic and specialty training programs.