February is Love the Bus Month, a monthlong celebration created by the American School Bus Council to honor the contributions of drivers, attendants and all transportation personnel to public education.
This year, PCPS’ PR department dispatched intern Darren Ortiz — who also studies in our district’s Transition program — to get to know some of our outstanding transportation employees. We’ll be introducing them to you all month long.
Thank you, PCPS transportation employees, for all you do to put Students First!
Profile: Tim Harper, PCPS bus driver
After Tim Harper sold his lube shop business, he needed a way to fill his time.
His wife, Sandy — a PCPS teacher — urged him to consider becoming a bus driver, because he’s always liked driving and has a patient and kind personality.
Tim took his wife’s suggestion, joining PCPS as a bus driver and quickly becoming known as “Mr. Tim” to his students. He especially enjoys making his students laugh, and believes that establishing good relationships helps with their behavior and attitude.
Tim greets his students by name every day and tries to find something positive to say to each child. One of his favorite stories is about a student named Cody.
Tim drove Cody to school for five years. As fate would have it, one day Cody, Tim and Sandy all found themselves in the same waiting room at Lakeland Regional Health. Tim and Sandy were awaiting the birth of their first granddaughter; Cody was waiting for his first child to be born.
Tim and Cody struck up a conversation about their “bus days.” Cody recalled that he used to have trouble waking up on time; Tim purchased an alarm clock for Cody to help keep him from missing the bus.
It meant a lot to Tim that Cody remembered that act of kindness so many years later.