HIGH POINT, N.C. — Thomas Built Buses is once again inviting students to nominate their favorite school bus drivers for its Children’s Choice School Bus Driver of the Year essay contest.
For the contest, which is in its seventh consecutive year, students in kindergarten through sixth grade can submit essays of at least 90 words to nominate their drivers. Through words and pictures, students can describe what makes their school bus drivers special. The winning essays will be featured on the Thomas Built website when the judging is complete.
“A school bus driver’s primary responsibility is to get students safely to school and home again. The essay contest provides a platform for us to shine a light on drivers who do this and so much more,” said Kelley Platt, president and CEO of Thomas Built Buses. “Many of the essays describe drivers who have become champions, admired mentors, trusted guardians and dear friends, and we want to recognize those drivers in a big way for the meaningful role they play in children’s lives.”
Over the years, Thomas Built has received thousands of heartfelt essays from children across the U.S. and Canada sharing stories of bus drivers’ compassion and extraordinary actions that help make their day brighter.
“She is like my grandmother, and I even call her nana sometimes,” wrote fifth-grader Mauriene Ann, who nominated the 2011 winner, Joyce St. John of Decatur, Ala.
A 42-year bus driver, St. John had driven Mauriene’s mom, as well as Mauriene’s four siblings, two of whom had medical issues to which St. John was extra attentive, officials said.
Entries for this year’s contest must be postmarked by June 30. Completed forms and typed or legibly printed essays should be mailed to: Children’s Choice Essay Contest, HMH, 1435 W. Morehead St., Ste. 140, Charlotte, NC 28208.
The child who nominates the grand prize winner will receive a laptop computer and $1,000 educational savings bond, and the nominated driver will receive a $1,000 Visa gift card. Grand prize winners and top finalists also will receive Thomas Built Buses jackets and Saf-T-Liner C2 school bus lunch boxes.
For complete contest rules and an entry form, visit www.thomasbus.com/contest.