Teachers Endorse Safe-T Rider Program
The Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation conducted a survey and focus group on its Safe-T Rider program, and results show an overall positive perception.
Since 1991, the Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation (EESF) has reached nearly eight million children through its various educational programs designed to promote the safe and proper use of elevators, escalators and moving walks. Though the Foundation offers various programs for different age groups, children 7-10 years old are a major focus. To reach this age group, EESF delivers Safe-T Rider© to schools across the U.S. and Canada.
In February 2012, EESF developed a strategic plan to do a focus group survey of Safe-T Rider users across the U.S. and Canada to evaluate their perceptions of the program and implement necessary changes. In August 2012, the survey concluded, and the very positive preliminary results were discussed in a fall board meeting. In addition, Elevator World, Inc. Publisher and EESF Board Member Ricia S. Hendrick presented the survey results at the Foundation’s Annual General Meeting on February 25 in Atlanta. Prior to receiving the survey responses, the Foundation agreed to review all suggestions and was prepared to revise and/or enhance the program as needed. However, the majority of the results revealed an overall positive perception of the Safe-T Rider program.
“One of the problems we have always had with Safe-T Rider is adults can find it annoying after a few minutes of the rap music. Although many volunteers relate to the program, we often get calls from industry members asking that we revise it. It is great to know what we all suspected – kids love it and the teachers confirm that their students learn from it.” – Ricia S. Hendrick, EESF board member
Of the nearly 100 surveyed teachers, approximately 80% said they had delivered the program in their classrooms for several years, and 63% said they preferred Safe-T Rider’s current format, which includes:
- Teacher’s guide
- 8-1/2-min. DVD
- Activity book
- Certificate of completion
The remaining 37% said they would be interested in electronic formats and/or Internet involvement for their classrooms. Within the DVD, the program’s mascot presents the lesson via a musical rap. The survey revealed 96% said the musical style was still appropriate for their students (ages 7-10 years old).
When asked which changes and/or enhancements would make the program more effective for the children, 67% said no changes were really needed. However, the remaining 33% offered suggestions, which included more activities in the book and/or online (both of which the Foundation is working on). When asked which changes they would implement to make the program more appealing to teachers, more than half said they would not make any changes. However, suggestions included:
- Assembly format
- More interactive activities
- SMART Board version
Expanding the Program
Survey participants were also asked to provide suggestions for introducing the Safe-T Rider program to teachers who do not offer the program to their students. The majority of the recommendations are already used to disseminate the information. However, according to EESF, volunteers are needed in order to implement some of the proposed ways to introduce the program such as having the Safe-T Rider mascot visit schools to encourage their participation in the program.
When asked how they would prefer to provide feedback regarding the program, the majority of the teachers said e-mail and/or online/electronic formats were preferred.
Full results of the focus group survey are available online at http://www.eesf.org/education/safetrider_information.html.
Teachers Comment on Program’s Musical Style
- “My kids love it. They see and sing in first grade and see, sing and color in second. However, if it were for older students, it would need to be edgier.”
- “It even works well with my five year olds.”
- “A little silly, but the kids seem to like it.”
- “The kids love it.”
- “Teachers and students enjoy the program.”
- “It’s perfect the way it is, very easy to follow.”