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Student safety on Wilson Area School Board's mind

By Len Righi, WFMZ.com Reporter
Published On: Aug 19 2013 10:51:42 PM CDT
Updated On: Aug 20 2013 07:49:58 AM CDT
WILSON, Pa. -

Two measures aimed at insuring student safety -- one short term, one long term -- were approved by the Wilson Area School Board on Monday night.

The short-term action involved approval of a plan to have youngsters in kindergarten through the fourth grade who take the bus to school to wear information tags when school starts on Monday.

That way, the students can be easily identified by bus drivers, along with the stops where they are picked up and dropped off, said Kevin Steidle, the Williams Township Elementary School principal who originated the idea.

The young students can wear the tag on a lanyard around their necks for two weeks, Steidle said. Parents also can fill in the information on the tags and attach the tags to a back pack, he added.

Schools Supt. Doug Wagner said Steidle came up with the idea last year, and that this was the first year it is being implemented.

About 400 students will be affected, Wagner said.

The board also acted to help remedy a longer-term safety problem by awarding a $32,400 contract to D'Huy Engineering Inc., of Bethlehem.

Following a presentation by Josh Grice, a project manager at D'Huy, the board gave its blessing the to a design that would extend a driveway in front of Wilson Elementary School about 150 feet around back and on to South 21st Street.

Grice said the new access driveway would help avoid congestion in front of the school.

His remarks were echoed by Supt. Wagner, who told the board, "We cross our fingers every day" when it rains or snows and the congestion problem worsens as parents drop off and pick up their children.

Wagner called the extension "a significant project," and estimated it could cost as much as $250,000.