Sequatchie County Schools receive grant for seat belts on new bus
A new $10,000 grant from the Tennessee Department of Education will allow Sequatchie County Schools to outfit a new Special Education bus with seat belts.
Pete Swafford, the Director of Schools for Sequatchie County, says that they're buying a new large bus and Special Education bus as well with funds from Volkswagen.
"The Volkswagen grant is about $95,000 for us the cost of a bus is in the $100,000 range, so it's essentially paying for almost one bus," said Swafford.
The grant from the Tennessee Department of Education will help them put seat belts on the new Special Education bus.
"So it is an extra charge to put those on a bus, so we applied for the grant with the state," said Swafford.
They're saving $350 to $450 a seat belt on the 35 seater bus. Swafford says this isn't a new practice for them.
"Basically for as long as I can remember, probably the last 20, 25 years, we have had seat belts on our preschool buses and our Special Ed. buses," said Swafford.
They aren't planning to put seat belts on the large buses for several reasons including lack of research and possible seating issues.
"Our large buses don't have monitors on them, they have one adult the driver, and if you have your students in seat belts there are certain situations where that would be a safety hazard we believe," said Swafford.
The new buses will go into service at the start of the next school year.
Ten additional school districts will also receive funding for seat belts.
The following table shows which counties: