ALBANY, N.Y. — The National Association for Pupil Transportation (NAPT) has partnered with consulting firm The Dash Group to create a customized way for employers to assess a school bus driver's capacity for sound judgment.
The School Bus Driver Safety and Risk Index is designed to measure a current or prospective driver’s decision-making ability. The assessment is available online and is expected to take most job applicants no more than 10 to 12 minutes to complete. Afterward, employers receive a confidential, downloadable report.
According to NAPT, the report gives employers a sense of the candidate’s abilities and capacities in such areas as problem solving; dependability; work ethic; dealing with difficult people and situations; concentration; and following directions.
"Most school transportation service providers check a driver's police and DMV records and test for drug use, but haven't previously had a specific way to assess an intangible like good judgment that is unique to each individual," said Keith Henry, president of NAPT. "We see this as an important additional component of driver recruitment and training."
Dash Group CEO Catherine Hickem added, "Just as we assume and expect airline pilots behind the locked flight deck door to have good judgment as things unfold at 35,000 feet, parents expect no less of their child's school bus driver. Knowing more about someone's capacity to exercise good judgment is an important piece to mitigating risk out on the road."
NAPT said that the School Bus Driver Safety and Risk Index can be used as a first-line assessment in hiring. If a driver candidate scores poorly, the process can stop before money is spent on DMV checks, background checks, or drug screenings. The index can also be used to assess current employees and to help employers ensure that those employees receive appropriate training or support.
The cost is $40 per assessment.