Stanly County Schools prepares for new school year with potentially life-saving trainings

STANLY COUNTY, N.C. — As the first day of school creeps closer in Stanly County, bus drivers are receiving some extra lessons.

The county is offering “Stop the Bleed” training so drivers can respond to injuries should a worst-case scenario occur this school year.

Seventy bus drivers filled a room on Wednesday to learn how to possibly save a life.

“Bus drivers, we’re out there all by ourselves,” said Jim McGann, a bus coordinator for the district. “It’s nobody else to help us.”

The drivers were taught three techniques to assist someone suffering from an injury where there is heavy bleeding: direct pressure, wound packing and tourniquets.

McGann says how they’re being trained makes a big difference.

“Everyone gets book training,” he said. “You read it all the time. But to actually do (it) hands on — it takes it to a whole new level and new meaning.”

Jennifer Flowe oversees safety and security for Stanly County Schools. She says early intervention by drivers can be crucial.

“It’s training them how to react and getting them comfortable with doing emergency things until other help arrives,” she said.

Bus drivers aren’t the only staffers receiving a crash course in safety.

“Within our school – the administrators train the staff on how to react to different circumstances throughout the school day,” Flowe said. “We train our students on how to report something they see.”

Stanly County Sheriff Jeff Crisco said it prepares everyone to make sure kids are safe.

“We go above and beyond the mandatory minimum that the state says,” Crisco said. “We always go through three times the amount of training.”

Crisco just bought for metal detectors for the district with plans to use them at big events like graduation or football and basketball games.

With school starting on Monday, county leaders want to reassure parents and students that safety is a top priority.

“Make sure our kids our safe from the time they get on that school bus to the time they get off that school bus,” Flowe said.

The training session earlier this week was a collaborative effort between EMS and other local agencies. The district said it hopes to offer more opportunities for staff members throughout the school year.

(WATCH BELOW: Safety a concern as students across Carolinas head back to school)

Almiya White

Almiya White, wsoctv.com

Almiya White is a reporter for WSOC-TV