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Duluth 5th Grader is Awarded "AAA School Safety Patroller of the Year"

Sleepy Eye Public School is One of Ten Schools awarded a $500 Advancement Grant for their School Safety Patrol Program

AAA School Safety Patroller of the Year - MN

A Bay View Elementary fifth-grader is receiving top honors from AAA – The Auto Club Group. Austin Carlson was named "AAA School Safety Patroller of the Year" for the 2020-21 school year in Minnesota.

"Participating in my AAA School Safety Patrol has helped me become a better leader during a national pandemic by helping me be more responsible and safer in our community along with helping students cross the street," said Carlson.

The AAA School Safety Patroller of the Year Award recognizes the patroller who best exemplifies the leadership qualities, good citizenship, school involvement, and application of safety skills vital to effectively and responsibly wear the AAA School Safety Patrol badge. Each year, AAA is proud to recognize and award the AAA School Safety Patroller of the Year Award. Only one deserving patrol member per state earns this annual award.

AAA $500 Advancement Grant

Each year the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety awardes ten deserving schools with a Charles M. Hayes Advancement Grant. This year, Sleepy Eye Public School, from Sleepy Eye, MN, was one of ten schools awarded with a $500 grant to grow their School Safety Patrol Program.

The Sleepy Eye Patrollers "provide safe passage across the street and parking lot twice a day in all kinds of weather.They are expected to set the example of Sleepy Eye Pride not only while patrolling, but in school and in our community," says school patrol supervisor, Suzanne Kanzenbach.

"As students participate in school patrol I see them become more confident and outgoing. They become more comfortable giving directions and instructions to students and adults alike," Kanzenbach wrote in her application. "In order to get to their patrol station on time, most have to get up earlier in the morning to be able to walk or bike to school. This shows me increased maturity on their part along with a dedication to doing a good job and pride in their accomplishments. It has helped many of my participants think their behaviors through because they know the expectation of setting a good example and showing Sleepy Eye Pride in all they do."

The grant money will go toward new equiptment, patroll uniform items and winter gear such as hats, caps, and gloves to thank the Patrollers for their hard work and dedication to the program. These items will also help protect patrollers from the elements as they are at their post, ensuring their safety as they ensure the safety of others. Additionally, there is a plan for a "Patroller of the Month" award to recognize the outstanding service of their Patrollers on a regular basis.

All ten grant winners listed below.

AAA School Safety Patrol Program Turns 100

The AAA School Safety Patrol program is the largest safety program in the world! Each year, more than 670,000 children participate at over 35,000 schools throughout the country. For 100 years, AAA has sponsored the AAA School Safety Patrol program, which instills students with a sense of responsibility, leadership and citizenship. AAA provides an array of equipment and material, including electric-lime fluorescent belts, nickel plated steel badges and training for the AAA School Safety Patrollers. When properly uniformed and trained, they can assist their grade school classmates by ensuring their safety to and from school every day.

The program has been praised by safety and education groups around the globe for reducing injuries and deaths among 5-to-14 year olds, the age group most at risk for pedestrian injury. In addition to keeping students safe, the program teaches lifelong lessons of responsibility, leadership and good citizenship.

Typically, teachers and principals appoint patrol members, who participate with parental approval. A teacher usually serves as the patrol advisor. Local law enforcement officers may also be involved with patrols. Click here to learn more.

2020-2021 AAA School Safety Patrol Charles M. Hayes Grant Recipients:

  • Bagdad Elementary, Milton, FL

  • Collins Garden Elementary, San Antonio, TX

  • Doctors Inlet Elementary, Middleburg, FL

  • Groveland Elementary School, Doylestown, PA

  • Jenks East Elementary, Jenks, OK

  • Johnston Elementary, Appleton, WI

  • Sleepy Eye Public School, Sleepy Eye, MN

  • Toth Elementary School, Perrysburg, OH

  • Triad Elementary School, North Lewisburg, OH

  • West Pensacola Elementary, Pensacola, FL