Quincy McSpadden and Maria Bustamante observe drivers as they entered the CHS parking lot to create a baseline for the campaign. A second survey will be completed towards the end of the year to evaluate the effectiveness of the campaign.
Claremore High School is participating in the SAFE (Seatbelts Are For Everyone) program for the second year. SAFE is a teen run program that focuses on increasing the use of seatbelts and smart driving decisions as a whole. “The goal is to raise awareness and activism to the number of motor vehicle-related injuries and fatalities among Oklahoma teens,” said SAFE coordinator Danielle Culp. “Our vision for the year is to educate students about the dangers of distracted driving and teach them how to be safer drivers.” Their goals are accomplished through education, positive rewards, and enforcement.
Facilitated by National Honor Society, students will be participating in unannounced observational surveys, and pledge drives. Students who facilitate surveys check to see if cars entering the school parking lot are belted, distracted, and if there is a passenger that’s belted. The pledge drives are hosted so fellow students can make a written promise to always wear their seatbelt. These pledges are entered into a drawing each month and prizes are given to the signees drawn. Last year a total $1900.00 in gift certificates were awarded through the SAFE grant program.
Each month the students create a unique educational activity to inform and remind students buckle up. National Honor Society is creating educational incentives through the SAFE Sprint in October. Students post facts and statistics around the school about safe driving. To encourage students to pay attention to the statistics and facts each class competes through trivia over the intercom for boxes of donuts in turn for correct answers.
Working closely with the school resource officer students have been able to provide real life simulations through virtual goggles, demonstrating how their vision is impaired when they’re under the influence. Other events will be scheduled as the year continues so that the realities of harmful driving habits can be reinforced.
In 2015, 3,477 people were killed in accidents involving distracted driving. In 2011, 58% of teen drivers killed in crashes were not wearing a seat belt. These staggering statistics have helped students reflect on the seriousness of this issue. National Honor Society and Claremore Police Department to observe and account for this issue throughout the school.
Claremore High School is taking initiative this year to promote a more safe, positive, and productive environment for students and faculty to thrive in. The goal of SAFE is to educate, empower, and reward students for being safe on the road for themselves and others. As a school, they hope to raise awareness of this growing issue throughout their school, community, city, and state.
(Left to Right)- Danielle Culp, Natalie Evans, Maria Bustamante, Lindsey Owens Riley Jensen. Top (Left to Right)- Mariana Gomez, Jessica Dukes, Emily Heard, Lauren Hardage, Anna Whetstone, Zoe Heard, Breanna Farmers, Kelcey Nees, Sarah Lavalley, Kassidy Hannah, Quincy McSpadden, Maxee Alexander, Daniella Reyes, Susie Phillips.