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May 11, 2012  |   Comments (4)   |   Post a comment

School buses on screen and after retirement

by Kelly Roher


Here, a school bus is featured in a preview for “The Dark Knight Rises” (Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures). This is just one example of the many times these vehicles have been included in films.

When I come in to work each day for SBF, I’m always reminded of the important role that school buses and the pupil transportation industry as a whole play in students’ education.

Outside of work, I’m often reminded of how yellow buses are an integral part of our culture. During a recent trip to the movies, I saw a preview for the Batman flick “The Dark Knight Rises,” which included a scene with a school bus.

This is one of many films where school buses play a role. In 2008’s “The Dark Knight,” the Joker uses a school bus as his getaway vehicle for a bank robbery. SBF paid tribute to school buses in films in 2010 by showcasing this scene and several other memorable ones.         
I’ve noticed that school buses are sometimes featured in TV shows as well, particularly if the characters in the show are high school students. In thinking about this, I became curious as to whether your operation’s school buses have ever been used in a film or TV show. If so, I’m interested to learn what movie or show; post a comment below or send an e-mail to [email protected].

School buses remain useful for a variety of purposes after they’ve been retired from service by school districts and contractors, further exemplifying their relevance in our culture beyond transporting students. As SBF reported in “Retired School Buses Still Serve," these vehicles have been used for everything from selling groceries to constructing underground bunkers to mobile homes.  

More recently, SBF reported on an Alabama family that uses a retired school bus as a tornado shelter.

We also shared photos of other repurposed school buses in the gallery “The New Lives of Old School Buses.” Among the interesting conversions are a school bus that’s serving as a mobile farmer’s market and a bus that’s been turned into a gym on wheels. 

When your operation has retired its school buses, what types of projects or services have they been used for? Share your stories below or in an e-mail.

Until next time,

Kelly Roher
Managing Editor

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A well maintained school bus is just like a fine wine. It gets better over time.

Wayne Glenn    |    May 14, 2012 08:30 AM

We gave one of our retired school buses to the Rittman Police Department. They parked it by their shooting range and used it to practice many instances where a bus and/or children could be put in danger. The county S.W.A.T. team used it to practice their reactions to possible real life situations and I was told by the police Department that the Air Marshalls from the Cleveland Area came here and used it to simulate an airplane so they could practice.I was happy that the bus was used to prepare people for worst case scenarios, but pray that their training will never have to be used.Kathy Yannayon Rittman exempted Village Schools

Kathy Yannayon    |    May 14, 2012 08:56 AM

School buses always seem to be the underdog and dont get the same recognition as fire trucks do even though fire trucks are very heroic. It would be nice to see buses fully restored after retirement rather than a huge trend thats going on now with several buses being smashed up and destroyed in bus racing at crash up derbies not to mention its a dangerous practice thats had a few fatal incidents. Fire trucks never see this kind of humiliation maybe more enthusiast will show an interest. theres plenty of toy fire trucks where theres only a hand full of toy model school buses

george ruggiero    |    May 14, 2012 04:27 PM

When my old bus blew the engine, they pulled it and donated it to a local fire department to torch and train on. That poor bus is probably a mangled charred mess by now!

Jake Overby    |    May 15, 2012 03:19 PM

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