There's no doubt many parents of school-age children have accomplished the "back to school" laundry list: notebooks, bookbags, lunch boxes, pens, pencils, crayons. The list in continuous.
But there's one thing perhaps that slips our minds this time of year - school bus safety.
Schools opened last week for St. Aloysius, Wellsville and Hancock County, and begin this coming week for East Liverpool, Beaver Local, Southern and American Spirit Academy.
With that, we ask: When was the last time you spoke with your child about school bus safety rules?
Maybe it's been a few years. Maybe never. Perhaps, though, we assume that if they were told once, they have it engraved within that ever-expanding memory.
That being said, we ask that you take a few minutes this weekend and rehash some of those safety rules with your children - all of ages - who hop aboard the bus each day.
Here's some rules to follow:
* First and foremost is to be on time. Arrive early before your scheduled pick up, that way the rush to make the bus doesn't overshadow safety.
* Bus drivers should establish a "safe spot" for the children, aka an area clear of traffic and away from the bus where they should stand. Have your child stay in this spot or ask the driver where they should await the bus' arrival.
* Stay at least 10 feet clear of the bus on all sides.
* Cross only in front of the bus where the driver can see you and wait for the driver to give you the OK before you cross the street.
* Sit in your seat at all times. Never move from seat-to-seat and never climb over the seats. Keep the aisle and exits clear. Moving about, especially while the bus is in motion, is a distraction to the driver.
* Remain seated until the bus stops and the driver gives the OK to exit.
* Respect the bus driver as you would your parents, teachers or coaches. They are looking out for your safety.
* Do not throw items on, from or into the bus. And keep your head and arms out of the bus windows.
Many of these things safety tips seem obvious, but it doesn't hurt to rehash them with your children.
After all, safety is the key issue here.