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Michigan schools participate in teen safe driving program

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Students at 62 Michigan high schools benefited from efforts to make teenagers better, safer drivers by participating in Strive For a Safer Drive, or S4SD, a public-private partnership between Ford Driving Skills for Life and the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning, OHSP. The peer-led traffic safety campaign seeks to reduce traffic crashes, which are the leading cause of death for teens.

“Inexperience and risk-taking behavior are factors that increase the crash risk for young drivers,” said Michael L. Prince, OHSP director. “This campaign aims to increase safety and raise awareness about teen driving in a way that teens can relate to and better understand.”

The S4SD high schools for the 2018-2019 school year were:

  • Allegan County: Otsego
  • Barry County: Lakewood
  • Bay County: Garber
  • Berrien County: Benton Harbor
  • Branch County: Coldwater
  • Calhoun County: Athens Jr./Sr. High School and Harper Creek
  • Cass County: Cassopolis Ross Beatty
  • Chippewa County: Rudyard
  • Clare-Gladwin Cos: Clare-Gladwin Regional Education Service District (RESD)
  • Eaton County: Grand Ledge and Potterville
  • Genesee County: Atherton Jr./Sr. High School and Carman-Ainsworth
  • Grand Traverse County: Traverse City West Senior High School
  • Hillsdale County: Jonesville and Reading
  • Ionia County: Ionia
  • Lenawee County: JC/LISD Academy
  • Livingston County: Brighton and Hartland
  • Macomb County: Chippewa Valley, Dakota, Dakota Ninth Grade Center, DiAnne M. Pellerin Center, Fraser, Lake Shore and Paul K. Cousino 
  • Marquette County: Ishpeming
  • Mason County: West Shore ESD Career and Technical Education Center
  • Midland County: Midland
  • Monroe County: Bedford Senior High School, Dundee, Ida and Monroe 
  • Muskegon County: Muskegon Area Career Tech Center
  • Newaygo County: Newaygo
  • Oakland County: Berkley, Holly, Lake Orion, Lakeland, Lamphere, Rochester Adams and University High School-Ferndale
  • Ontonagon County: Ontonagon
  • Presque Isle County: Onaway and Posen Consolidated
  • Sanilac County: Croswell-Lexington
  • St. Clair County: Anchor Bay
  • Tuscola County: Vassar
  • Washtenaw County: Dexter and Skyline 
  • Wayne County: Ben Carson, Ecorse, Edsel Ford, Fordson, Golightly Career & Technical Center, Grosse Ile, John Glenn, Oscar A. Carlson, Plymouth and Woodhaven

As part of the S4SD program, schools received $1,000 for students to create a teen-led traffic safety campaign to educate their fellow classmates about distracted driving, seat belt use, speeding, underage drinking/impaired driving and winter driving.

Schools submitted a video or PowerPoint outlining campaign activities. The top five campaigns were selected and those winning schools will win a cash prize ranging from $500 to $1,500. Following their activities, schools had the opportunity to send students to a free hands-on driving clinic with professional driving instructors sponsored by Ford Driving Skills for Life.  

“Programs like Strive For a Safer Drive and Driving Skills for Life have been shown to be successful in helping young, novice drivers make smart decisions behind the wheel,” said Jim Graham, the global manager for Ford Driving Skills for Life. “Through hands-on learning, we hope to improve teen driver safety and decrease the risk that teen drivers pose to themselves and others.”

2018-19 winning schools

1st place: West Shore ESD Career and Technical Education Center

2nd place: Fraser High School

3rd place: Lake Shore High School

4th place: Grand Ledge High School

5th place: Anchor Bay High School

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