SB20-052 would create a student tracking and parent notification system, educate the public about school bus safety, recruit school bus drivers, and provide funding for safety initiatives. File photo

SB20-052 would create a student tracking and parent notification system, educate the public about school bus safety, recruit school bus drivers, and provide funding for safety initiatives. File photo

DENVER — A lawmaker here is seeking to increase school bus safety and security for students by implementing a new pilot program.

Sen. Don Coram introduced SB20-052, also known as “The Smart School Bus Safety Pilot Program,” on Jan. 8. The bill would create a program, overseen by the state Department of Public Safety and a program administrator, to develop and maintain a website, online service, or online/mobile application for parents to track their child’s bus; inform and educate the public about school bus safety; recruit school bus drivers; and provide funding for safety initiatives.

Additionally, under the program, the bill states that the Department of Public Safety would award three-year grants to participating school districts for radio equipment and silent alarms, as well as funding for training, installation, and maintenance costs for the equipment. School districts would also be required to submit a report to the program administrator about their use of the grant funding.

SB20-052 is currently scheduled for a hearing with the Senate Finance committee on Feb. 11, according to the General Assembly’s website. The bill is reportedly part of a larger effort to increase safety in Colorado's schools, with the state spending $75 million over the past two years, according to CBS4.

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