MCDONOUGH, Ga. — Two local school bus drivers recently captured a state title at the Georgia Special Needs Bus Roadeo, earning a chance to compete at the national level.

The duo of Lori Partee and Sandy James, both special-needs bus drivers for Henry County Schools, won their division’s competition at the state level. They will go on to represent Georgia at the National Special Needs Team Safety Roadeo in Louisville, Kentucky, in March.

“These two ladies are excellent examples of the outstanding drivers we have here in Henry County,” said Cliff Shearouse, director of transportation for Henry County Schools. “We are very pleased to have them represent us and the state at the national competition.”

The Georgia competition covered a wide array of tasks and skills, including wheelchair loading and securement, car-seat securement, special-needs evacuation and managing student behavior.

Partee is a 21-year veteran in transportation and has worked for the Henry County Schools transportation department since 2008. She made her first trip to the National Special Needs Team Safety Roadeo in 2013.

James has been a bus driver since 2008. She joined the Henry County Schools driver ranks in 2013. Her experience in a previous school district’s competition included a finish in first place.

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