Shoreline elementary students selected for 2020 AAA School Safety Patrol Hall of Fame

Sunday, May 17, 2020

In recognition of their dedication to traffic safety, community stewardship and leadership, Elana Bronsther, a sixth-grade student at Echo Lake Elementary and Cameron Cook, a sixth-grade student at Syre Elementary were recently chosen for induction into the 2020 AAA School Safety Patrol Hall of Fame.

As a long-standing tradition, a panel of judges from AAA Washington, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Washington Traffic Safety Commission chooses ten top patrollers for induction into the AAA Washington School Safety Patrol Hall of Fame. 

Nominations require input from both the patroller and their advisor, including responses to a series of essay questions. This year, the panel received nearly 45 nominations from across the state to review and evaluate.

Elana Bronsther
Echo Lake Elementary
Elana Bronsther – Echo Lake Elementary

Bronsther took action when she spotted safety issues at her school, creating a new patroller post in a hallway where unsafe and loud first graders waited for classes to begin. Patrol advisor, Joe Wack says she found a way to reassign four patrollers to that area without affecting the other posts. He calls it a wonderful improvement for the school.

As instructed, Bronsther notified Wack when she saw a parent driving while talking or texting on a cell phone. The advisor says one parent, initially angry about her report, later thanked Bronsther for doing her job. “This parent finally realized the bigger picture of student safety,” Wack said. “She was very apologetic and complimented Bronsther for having the courage to speak up about her dangerous driving habit.”

Cameron Cook
Syre Elementary
Cameron Cook – Syre Elementary

Cook’s nomination centered on his drive towards making things better. The patrol captain consistently led by example, jumping in where needed, demonstrating the proper management of each post. It is an intimidating task for any sixth-grader, telling fellow students how to behave. 

Cook’s ability for speaking up and enforcing the rules impressed patrol advisor Jenny Hodgen. She is a big fan of his new program, rewarding students who obey the rules with positive behavior slips. 

“Cook’s idea of using positive reinforcements for students in order to encourage the desired behavior is exactly what we were looking for,” Hodgen said. “He is always seeking ways to improve the system and make the job safer for students.”

The 2020 AAA Washington School Safety Patrol Hall of Fame class includes seven girls and three boys from rural and urban communities across Washington.

AAA created the School Safety Patrol 100 years ago, and has been inducting outstanding patrollers into the local Hall of Fame for 29 years, and partners with local agencies to bring the program to elementary schools across Washington.


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