10 September 2019, will be remembered as a historic day for the safety of students here in the State of Iowa. The rule for requiring lap/shoulder belts on all new school buses was fully adopted by the ARRC (Administrative Rules Review Committee) at the Legislature. Iowa now becomes the 5th state in the nation to require lap/shoulder belts on new school buses, effective with new school buses ordered on or after 2 October 2019. What has been a 40+ year argument/debate/fight/discussion regarding the required installation of "seatbelts" on school buses across the nation, now draws to a close here in Iowa with this new rule.

Max Christensen, Executive Officer/State Director of School Transportation said, “I believe it was time this concern was finally put to rest, and I also believe this will benefit the parents, bus drivers, and especially the students here in Iowa. While others may not hold that same belief, it is now time to move on. Yesterday was likely the most historic day ever in Iowa school transportation history.”

Our district purchased its first two lap/shoulder belt equipped buses in November 2018, one of the first fourteen districts in Iowa to do so, with the first bus delivered in March 2019. A couple photos of the lap/shoulder belt equipped seats shown below.

On 22 January 2020, the Louisa-Muscatine Board of Education unanimously approved the purchase of 540 lap belts for a majority of our district's buses (those buses capable of supporting lap belts). This effort provides better student securement, reduce bus driver distraction, and overall increase student safety.