Editor's note: The following first-person account was written by Debbie Heide, the transportation director at Selah School District located about 140 miles southeast of Seattle. In September of 2010, she shared with us the story of a student with a disability who quickly became loved by her, her staff and members of the Washington State Association for Pupil Transportation (WAPT). We published in article in our November 2010 magazine issue, but want to dust off the entire letter and share with our readers this touching an example of the difference transportation professionals can make in the lives of students, and vice versa. Heide calls it "William’s Story."
After attending the Transporting Children with Special Needs and Preschoolers National Conference in Orlando, Fla., last month, I am once again so impressed with the passion school bus drivers have for their work. Although all bus drivers I’ve had the privilege to know over the past eight years have impressed me, none more so than those who drive preschool and special education students.