FCS Bus Driver Safeguards, Educates Students During Roadway Delay
Bus driver Katherine Carrier and "Friends"
BFES Principal Don Webb
and Katherine Carrier
On a dark, windy, and stormy first morning back from winter break, less than a mile away from Birmingham Falls Elementary Schools, Fulton County Schools (FCS) bus driver Katherine Carrier was stuck on a road with students. The incident took place before 7 a.m. A tree knocked down a live electrical line. While traveling a narrow dirt road for the last morning pickup, Mrs. Carrier and students were forced to wait until emergency personnel could clear the road so the bus could safely turn around.
What could have been a time of angst and worry for the young students onboard the bus turned into a time of fun and learning, because of a dedicated school bus driver.
"The kids were having a big party," Carrier said. "They made the most of their delay. Some students began a countdown as the clock struck what would have been the start of their school day. They sang Kool and the Gang's 'Celebration.'"
Undaunted, Carrier led the students through a diversion learning as they waited for the road to become safe for travel. She allowed them to share school lessons over the PA system on a variety of subjects, including discussions on outer space, dinosaurs, and minerals. A first grader read a book. Carrier told students about her recent trip to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. Students remained safe, calm, and engaged, which was Carrier's goal.
After learning the bus was stranded, Birmingham Falls Principal Don Webb met them at the scene.
"I am proud to have an exemplary bus driver, Katherine Carrier, driving the students of Birmingham Falls," Webb said. "When I arrived on the scene, what I witnessed was absolutely phenomenal. Mrs. Carrier was teaching the students geology. What's more, the students were coming to the front of the bus to teach the rest of the students using the PA. Firetrucks, chainsaw noises, and utility trucks didn't derail her lessons. Students riding this bus are fortunate to have a driver who cares so deeply about their safety and education. All the students arrived safely to school."
FCS Transportation dispatch and Milton Police stayed in communication with Carrier and kept her informed the entire time.
"I just want to give kudos to all my fellow drivers and support," Carrier said.