DeKalb County: Has your child’s school bus crashed in 2017?

Data: Since January, there have been nearly 60 incidents


Highlights

DeKalb school buses crashed more than 400 times in 2016

Figure is double initial DeKalb report to state officials

No accidents had been reported in 2014, just 2 in 2015

DeKalb County school bus drivers had more than 400 accidents in 2016, according to updated records on bus accidents submitted by the school district to the Georgia Department of Education.

For 2016, the DeKalb County School District reported 432 accidents to state officials, about 1.2 accidents daily. That’s more than any other metro Atlanta school district, according to state data.

INTERACTIVE: HAS YOUR CHILD’S BUS HAD AN ACCIDENT?

Use our locator map below to see which buses have reported incidents in 2017.

  • TELL US: Do you have concerns about your child’s safety on DeKalb’s school buses? Email Marlon A. Walker

Initially, the district reported 206 accidents to the state between July 21 and Dec. 1.

The DeKalb County School District did not report any crashes in 2014 and only two in 2015. It learned of the yearly discrepancies from an inquiry by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

District officials submitted 230 accident reports to the state for 2014 and 267 for 2015 after the discrepancy was discovered.

School districts are required to report every accident within 45 days to the Georgia Department of Education through an online portal. But some districts report crashes sparingly if at all, state officials said. 

District officials said in December that reports would be retroactively submitted to the state to ensure data was as accurate as possible. 

“Since learning that the accidents were not reported in the last two years, we started pulling weekly reports of what is reported to the state,” district officials said in the statement. “A bus accident report is now produced once per week to verify that we are reporting accidents.”

State officials said the data was used to tailor annual required training sessions, but did not offer specifics on how the data impacted training.

In Georgia, school bus drivers can be as young as 18, as long as they have passed a driving skills test and other requirements. Some districts require drivers to be 21 or older. Georgia’s laws do not mention mental health checks.

Concern about school bus safety grew after six Chattanooga elementary school children were killed days before Thanksgiving when a bus driver said he lost control of the vehicle and it flipped, crashing into a utility pole and a tree. Police charged the driver, Johnthony Walker, 24, with vehicular homicide, saying he drove “well above the posted speed limit of 30 mph.”


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Education

Opinion: Improving school nutrition will improve student learning
Opinion: Improving school nutrition will improve student learning

Caitlin Daugherty Kokenes is a project associate with the G eorgia Partnership for Excellence in Education. She holds a master’s in public policy from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a master’s in Hispanic studies from Auburn University, as well as an undergraduate degree in political science and Spanish...
Cheerleaders continue to take a knee at Kennesaw State football games
Cheerleaders continue to take a knee at Kennesaw State football games

Four Kennesaw State University cheerleaders were seen taking a knee in the stadium tunnel during the national anthem at the university’s football game Saturday evening, continuing their protest to raise awareness about police misconduct and racial inequality. The protest is part of an ongoing controversy on the 35,000 student campus that has...
Carstarphen: APS should be part of city’s Emory annexation
Carstarphen: APS should be part of city’s Emory annexation

Atlanta Public Schools should expand with the growing city limits, the superintendent said Friday, in a reaffirmation of the district’s stance about the city of Atlanta’s proposed annexation of the area around Emory University. “We anticipate that the public and the community will understand that we are a district that wants to grow...
Tex McIver’s release from jail expected next week
Tex McIver’s release from jail expected next week

Atlanta attorney Claud “Tex” McIver is likely to be released on bond from jail next week, providing him a four-month respite from incarceration before his murder trial begins March 5, his attorney said Friday. “The time will help Tex,” said lead defense attorney William Hill. Hill said McIver, 74, has lost upwards of 30 pounds...
DeKalb schools has new plan to make up class time lost during Tropical Storm Irma
DeKalb schools has new plan to make up class time lost during Tropical Storm Irma

The DeKalb County School District will keep its extended school day schedule through the month of November to make up time lost because of Tropical Storm Irma. The school district announced Friday that students would remain in school for an additional 20 minutes through Nov. 30. The district already implemented the extended class day for October. ...
More Stories