TIFT CO., GA (WALB) - The school bus became the classroom for many bus drivers.
Drivers from several south Georgia counties will now have new skills needed to transport special needs children.
There is often not as much thought given to the importance of the hours special needs students spend in their travels to and from school.
Like teachers, the bus drivers and their aides must get to know who is in their seats and how to get them to school and home safely.
"Safety of all of our students is important. Special ed drivers throughout our state is a special population. They have a lot of different options and a lot of specifics that they must do for that population of students that we transport," said Pat Schofill, Department of Education Director of People Transportation.
Bus drivers in Southwest Georgia spent Tuesday training how to assist special needs children, while transporting them to and from school.
They learned new techniques on seat belt safety, evacuation protocol and how to load and unload students.
"They're hitting the gamete of all areas, being in a wheelchair is involved for many of those students, tie downs and getting them secured properly," said Schofill.
Leaders from more than 10 school districts came to Tift County High School for the training session.
"These are skills that they will take back to their local districts and deliver to make it safer across the state," said Schofill.
For driver Samuel Littleton, he says this training should be a must for all drivers.
"This training is crucial. You can never get enough information or be too prepared," said Littleton.
Drivers that transport say the students safety is their main priority.
"Make sure that we protect 100% of our students 100% of the time," said Littleton.