Click on the email to get the latest CPST news! ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

Having trouble viewing this email? View it in your web browser


July/August 2020


Top News

Have an Idea for a Lifesavers Session?

The Lifesavers Conference Planning Committee is now accepting speaker proposals for the 2021 Conference workshops, which will be held April 25-27 in Long Beach, California. Proposals must be submitted via the Lifesavers online portal and will be accepted until September 4. All speaker proposals are carefully reviewed for their applicability to the Lifesavers Conference audience with an emphasis on “research to practice” and “vigorously evaluated programs.” 

Please note, Lifesavers will NOT accept a proposal with multiple speakers; only single speaker proposals will be accepted.

Financial assistance is available to help speakers from non-profits, government agencies and advocacy groups to offset a portion of their travel/conference expenses.  (Those seeking financial aid should check with their State Highway Safety Office first before requesting assistance from Lifesavers.) Please don’t let the cost of attending the Lifesavers Conference deter you or a colleague from submitting a proposal to speak in Long Beach.

Catch Phrases-What Do We Say to Get Our Point Across

In our daily lives we constantly use catch phrases or sayings to get our point across to our friends, family, co-workers, or the general public. For instance, when I am working with young kids and they are getting chatty like young kids do, I’ll say “Zip it, lock it, and put it in your pocket” as I simulate a zipper across my mouth! It’s catchy, the kids get the point, and it works. When working with caregivers on proper installation and use of child restraints, many of us have “go to” catch phrases that are used to get our points across.

Knowing that CPSTs love to share what works, we asked for your catch phrases on the CPS Board and CPS Certification Facebook pages and got some great ones:

  • For attaching lower anchors properly and the right direction, I use my hand to demonstrate a kitty cat claw scratching and I say, “Meow Meow.” Everyone I have taught has said they will never forget the proper direction. (M. Citero-Bonarenka)
  • “Backward below.” For straps coming from at, or below, the shoulders when rear facing. (B Peterson)
  • “Back to back” and “crack to crack.” Kids back up against the back of the seat and the butt crack against the crack of the seat pan. (A. Sanders)
  • For older kids I always say, “tight like a pilot.” Works well with kids who are fighting the harness from social pressure. (K. Lawson)
  • After securing the seat, I tell them, “Just like a smoke detector,” to make sure it’s safe check it at least once a month to make sure there is no movement, front to back, side to side. (D. Lofgren)
  • “Keep the harness as snug as a hug.” (D. Lewis)
  • “Aftermarket products saying crash tested is like me saying my iPad is waterproof after my kid threw it in the bath and it still worked.” (M. Adams)
  • “Rear facing until two is the minimum, not the goal. It’s like dropping out of high school at sixteen—it’s perfectly legal but far from ideal.” (P. Graham)
  • “Car seats don’t perform magic. You could buy the most expensive seat on the market, but it won’t protect your child in a crash if it’s not installed properly and used correctly.” (B. Bilo)
  • One of my go to phrases on why it is best practice to keep a child rear facing as long as possible, “If we could all ride rear facing, we would all be safer in the vehicle in a crash.” (M. Chappell)

I would like to thank everyone who submitted a comment. Keep up the great work you all are doing as CPSTs, because you are making a difference in child passenger safety.

Submitted by Michael Chappell, National Child Passenger Safety Board (South Kingstown, RI)


Social Media Communications and CPS Code of Conduct: Part 2

The Communications Council published a Social Media Code of Conduct Best Practice Guide, which states: “Active social media interaction by employees in a personal capacity is encouraged as a medium of advocacy and self-expression, however, it is important that guidelines are in place to minimize the risk of social media engagement harming your organization, client or employee’s reputation.”

Careful consideration should always be given to the nature of Facebook or other social media posts and activities. Your organization may have posting guidelines for their employees, but regardless of whether formal guidelines exist or not, a technician must be aware that negative posts referencing fellow techs or families participating in CPS activities do not, and will never, advance the field of CPS and its outreach and service to families. 

There are some steps that may help you turn a negative post into a positive opportunity to educate:

  • Remember that “You Are What You Post.” Technicians should follow our Code of Conduct and model for good behavior, keeping the conversation positive. For example, if someone posts that approved accessories shouldn’t be used because they are still non-regulated, you could state that car seat manufacturers test these accessories with the car seats they allow them to be used with and that a caregiver has the right to use them by properly following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • You may also unlike a page, post, or image or send a message privately to the person to let them know that there may be a better way to express an opinion. Use common sense when you share. What you post becomes a representation of you and/or your agency in the social media landscape. More can be accomplished by sharing useful content and understanding that social media can nurture existing relationships and develop new ones. 
  • If you are posting for an agency or organization, establish a policy along with an arsenal of draft responses so you are ready with a clear and positive response. You can have responses ready that shed light on a common problem that families share. For example, many families have small cars and putting 3 car seats in the back seat is going to have challenges. Be prepared to discuss options for appropriate narrow based seats and provide resources for the family such as AAP Product Listing.
  • Look at local car seat data to determine what those common problems typically are and develop solid messages to assist families. Enlist other agencies for their commitment to engage regular posts that educate the public.

Please take some time to review a webinar that discusses the Code of Conduct and the effective ways to communicate in-person and apply these lessons  to social media: Providing Feedback

Keep in mind, families come to us in person, online or virtually with various levels of knowledge, values, and cultural beliefs. They should leave safer than when they arrived. We should not be judging them in any way. We should “be polite, professional, and respectful. CPS Technicians empower families by inspiring and supporting their capabilities. Empowering families and each other with the guidance to make good decisions by reinforcing our CPST Code of Conduct. This is the key to our future success as CPS Technicians and for the field of child passenger safety.

Submitted by Kim Herrmann, CPSTI (Ft. Myers, Fla.)


Fact or Fiction – Recertification Edition

How much do you know about maintaining your CPS certification or what is needed to recertify? Do you know all the requirements about car seat sign offs, the difference between community education and what if you are audited? 

Test your knowledge with our fun “Fact or Fiction” presentation, which was inspired by questions from the CPST community. Not only will this help you understand what your responsibilities are for maintaining your national certification, but it can also be used by Instructors in their post class email to new technicians. It’s never too early to start thinking about recertification requirements.

Find it on our website and let us know ow you do on our Facebook page!

Submitted by Debbie Landoskey, Quality Assurance Specialist, Safe Kids Worldwide. (Ormond Beach, Fla.)


Continuing Education Units (CEUs) Explanation Series: Newsletters/Manuals/Journal

The last CEU category in our three-part CEU explanation series is about Newsletters/Manuals/Journals. CPSTS can earn a maximum of three combined CEUs from any of the category methods in this category. If you earn the maximum of three in this category, you can earn your other three online, in person, or on a call. 

Presently, there are two paid Newsletter subscriptions that allow you to earn CEUs: Safe Ride News and SafetyBeltSafe. For each subscription year, you will be given an invoice, which serves as your CEU proof if you are audited. It is important to understand that only the person whose name is on the paid subscription can receive the CEU for that subscription year. For information about small office subscriptions, which would allow up to three technicians to earn CEUs, please go to their websites.

For the sub-category of manuals, each one has a quiz that can be completed to receive one CEU: The LATCH manual quiz is a great way to get an overview of the current LATCH manual; which is published every two years by Safe Ride News. The Child Restraint Manufacturers’ Instructional USB is a compilation of child restraint instructions from the last 10 years offered by SafetyBeltSafe U.S.A.   

Journals tend to be the most misunderstood of the CEU categories. To receive one CEU for this sub-category, you must read three (3) qualified articles. These articles must come from a peer-reviewed, national circulated journal. That means articles from the CPS Express or Safe Ride News do not qualify. In addition, to be eligible, the articles must primarily include CPS technical content. Examples of approved journals include the Journal of the American Medical Association and Pediatrics.

Regardless of which category you decide to earn your CEUs, remember to log into your Safe Kids CPS Profile, enter the information and save all proof of CEU completion for at least three months after you recertify; in the event you receive an audit notification.

Submitted by Debbie Landoskey, Quality Assurance Specialist, Safe Kids Worldwide (Ormond Beach, Fla.)


New Webinar Opportunities!

During the last few months, many new webinars have been added and updated to earn CEUs while you are safely at home. Technicians and instructors do not need to be alarmed with the requirements to complete their recertification. Let’s look at the new additions to the websites!

The National CPS Board added these CEU opportunities in April, May and June! Each opportunity includes an online quiz.  A CEU and certificate is earned by scoring at least 80% on the quiz.

The National CPS Board added these Community Education opportunities in April, May, and June! There is no quiz (quizzes are only required for CEU sessions). Community Education is not audited, and no proof of completion is provided. After you watch the webinar, enter it in your online profile. You can mix and match to total 1 hour (minimum requirement).

Safe Kids Worldwide Certification added the CPS Remote Education Tool Kit, which includes ideas and resources on how CPST can provide education to caregivers during social distancing from Safe Kids Worldwide, Safe Ride News, Britax and Goodbaby.

Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service added a 6 Part of the Child Passenger Safety Tech Update 2020 to earn 1 CEU for each part.

Be safe and stay healthy!

Submitted by Stephanie Heitsch, Certification Associate, Safe Kids Worldwide. (Port Orange, Fla.)


New Kind of 'Tech' Support 

You’ve heard of the easy button, right? Well, think of the latest upgrade to the National Child Passenger Safety Board website as another kind of easy button. No, it’s not red, and you won’t see it. But we’re guessing you will love it.

In an effort to assist Technicians across America in the recertification process, Board members have enabled a fail-safe technology intended to make earning CEUs easier. The technology works like this: Techs will receive an automatic notification to register for an account or log in to an existing account on before taking a CEU quiz on the Board website recertification page

The goal: Prevent CPSTs from experiencing the frustration of taking a quiz, only for it to lock up before they learn their results or are able to print a certificate of completion. Renewing your credentials is hard enough. The technology part should be easy.

Submitted by Ron Kremer, National Child Passenger Safety Board (Itasca, IL)


National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Reports 

The National Center for Statistics and Analysis (NCSA), an office of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), is responsible for providing a wide range of analytical and statistical support to NHTSA and the highway safety community at large.  Here are a few examples: 

Rural/Urban Comparison of Traffic Fatalities (DOT HS 812 957): This factsheet provides a comparison of 2018 data on fatal crashes and fatalities in rural and urban areas. In 2018, there were 33,654 fatal motor vehicle traffic crashes resulting in 36,560 fatalities. Of the 33,654 fatal traffic crashes, 14,760 (44%) occurred in rural areas, 18,285 (54%) occurred in urban areas, and 609 (2%) occurred in unknown areas (not enough information to determine if the crashes were inside the rural or urban boundaries). Of the 36,560 traffic fatalities, 16,411 (45%) occurred in rural areas, 19,498 (53%) occurred in urban areas, and 651 (2%) occurred in unknown areas.

Non-Crash Surveillance: Non-Crash Fatalities During 2008-2011 (DOT HS 812 779): This Research Note provides information on fatalities to people of all ages and children 14 and younger, in particular, who were involved in “motor vehicle non-crash incidents” (herein referred to as “non-crash incidents”) over the four-year period: 2008 to 2011. The data on such incidents was obtained by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration through its Non-Traffic Surveillance system. The statistics in this research note refer to the non-crash fatalities that occurred to people in these incidents during the above-mentioned period.

Seat Belt Use in 2019—Use Rates in the States and Territories (DOT HS 812 947): In 2019, seat belt use in the United States ranged from 70.7 percent in New Hampshire to 97.1 percent in Hawaii. Twenty-six States, the District of Columbia, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands achieved seat belt use rates of 90 percent or higher. These results are from probability-based observational surveys conducted by the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and U.S. Territories. 


CEU Resources

This section provides information on nationally available continuing education opportunities. We are not able to include information on state or local conferences, training or other technical updates if they cannot be made available nationally. This information is provided as a resource only. Events and activities listed here are not endorsed by Safe Kids Worldwide unless otherwise noted.

CPS Express CEU Corner Submissions: Please e-mail the necessary information (in the format below) to Kerry Chausmer.



Kidz In Motion - Cancelled.
Orlando, Fla.
August 27-29, 2020 

Online Courses

A variety of webinars are available online and free of charge. Learn more.


Upcoming Safe Kids Webinars

Safe Kids is now using Zoom webinars. If you are not able to use Zoom or miss one, most webinars are record and posted on the CPS Board website.

Manufacturer Update: KidsEmbrace
Thursday, July 16, 2020
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET
Register Now

Manufacturer Update: Clek
Thursday, August 13, 2020
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET
Register Now

More webinars coming soon! Updates posted on Facebook.


For Instructors

CNE for the CPST Certification Course

Nurses can now earn 24.0 CNE for completing the CPST Certification course. Course must be at least 30 hours.

This nursing continuing professional development activity was approved by the Emergency Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.

You must contact Safe Kids in advance of the course. We have more information and links to the required forms on the website.

Special thank you to the fabulous Thelma Kuska for her expertise, advocacy and help with this project.

We hope that this new option will encourage nurses to take the course!

Covid-19: Tips for Courses

The country is opening up and instructors are starting to plan for Certification courses. The National Child Passenger Safety Board has compiled suggestions on how to run a course in a time of COVID-19 and encourages you to review them

There will be pressure for the instructor team to stay vigilant about risk reduction. To take some of the burden off the team, consider having a Prevention Coordinator. This volunteer’s only job is to make sure people are complying with mask use and handwashing/sanitizing. 

  • Temp checks at beginning of each day
  • Make sure folks are wearing masks properly
  • Remind hand washing/sanitizing before and after hands on work (test station)
  • Make sure hand hygiene supplies (soap, sink, sanitizer) are available.
  • Considerations for Schools

Should  a student show any signs or symptoms of illness, or if they arrive and are uncomfortable with the necessary contact, please have them send an Emergency Fee Refund form and request an $85 refund or reschedule to a registered public course. Safe Kids is unable to bank the fee for a potential future course. 

As you offer courses, please share your tips on what works and what doesn’t with the CPS Board.

Submitted by the National Child Passenger Safety Board


CPS Month: Instructor Pins

We had planned to celebrate CPST Month in May by providing a lapel pin to each CPST Instructors who taught a full Certification course. With no courses offered in May, we pivoted to CPS Month instead! All instructors who teach a Certification course in September will get a 2020 pin.

Since we don’t know how COVID will impact those courses, we will continue to monitor the situation, coming up with ways to distribute or sell the remaining pins in October.  Thank you for your dedication and hard work!


Questions? Comments? Concerns?

Safe Kids Worldwide
CPS Certification 
1255 23rd Street NW, Suite 400 
Washington, D.C. 20037
Phone: 202-875-6330

Ideas and Article Submissions

Advocates and manufacturers are welcome to submit articles, or suggestions for articles, to the CPS Express!

Send your ideas and submissions to

All submissions may be edited for content and length.

Policies and Procedures Manual   Code of Conduct   Contact Us

National CPS Certification Training is a program of Safe Kids Worldwide, which is the certifying body and responsible for managing all aspects of the program.

1255 23RD STREET, NW, SUITE 400
WASHINGTON, DC 20037 | PHONE: 877-366-8154