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November/December 2020


Top News

ALERT: Stop Spinning!

If you are in your CPS online profile and the page won't load (spinning circle), it is probably because you are using Internet Explorer for the browser. Internet Explorer is not compatible with some web pages because it is no longer supported/updated.

The solution is to use a different browser such as Chrome, Safari, Firefox or Edge.


Safe Kids Worldwide Team Cert is Here to Help!

The Safe Kids team is available to help you with recertification, course management, CEU audits and any other certification-related issues.

We are currently recruiting for the Certification Advisor position so if you are interested or have a referral, please reach out to Shushanna Mignott at smignott@safekids.org for details. We are excited about the path ahead and building upon the success of the Certification Program. Kerry Chausmer’s last day at Safe Kids was on October 9th and we wish her all the best in her next adventure.

A goodbye message from Kerry Chausmer

“For the past 16 years, it has been my pleasure to support CPST programming with the Safe Kids Worldwide Certification program. Words are truly inadequate to share how much love I have for the CPS community and CPSTs. I consider myself to be one of the lucky ones—fortunate to have been a part of such a fantastic organization with such a wonderful group of dedicated people for so many years. I am so proud to be a CPST since 1998 and CPST-I since 1999.

Though I have moved to a new position at GHSA, where I will continue to work to improve traffic safety, my heart is with you in CPS.

Thank you for your continued dedication and enthusiasm for the safe transportation of children and their families.

It isn’t too early to work on your recertification!”

Kerry Chausmer, Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) (Washington, DC)

We look forward to continuing to support you!

Safe Kids Worldwide Certification Team


Highlighting Programs Through Face Book Live!

During these times of COVID-19, coalitions, partners and Safe Kids Worldwide are all reaching out in various manners to continue to educate families and caregivers with life-saving safety messages. One of the ways Safe Kids has become involved is through many Facebook Live opportunities. This is a quick and on-the-spot way to reach families and be available to answer their questions.

If you haven’t had a chance to view all of the sessions, you can find them on our National CPS Certification Facebook page and also on the Safe Kids Worldwide Facebook page. You can view the recorded broadcasts under the video section of the pages.

On the National CPS Certification Facebook Page:

  • CPST Course during COVID! Do you dare?
    Helen Arbogast, Manager of Injury Prevention held a CPST Course at the Los Angeles Police Department Training Academy. In this Facebook Live, she provides tips and advice for producing a great class, including the importance of  planning ahead, a solid instructor team, course assistants focusing their time on COVID precautions, and much more!!
  • Let's have a Conversation with our State Farm liaison!
    We talked to Brenda Iverson, Corporate Responsibility Analyst, about tips to work closely with State Farm Representatives, how State Farm makes a difference in Traffic Safety, the Neighborhood Assist grants, and much more!
  • A Conversation with Dr. Marilyn Bull!
    We held a conversation with Dr. Marilyn Bull, National Center for Safe Transportation of Children with Special Needs at Riley Hospital at IU Health, to discuss car seats, seat belts and COVID-19.

On the Safe Kids Worldwide Facebook page:

  • Ask the Expert: Safe Sleep for Your Baby
    Experts from Children’s National and NICHD provided tips and inspiration for parents and caregivers about how to get a good night’s sleep for you and a SAFE night’s sleep for your baby.
  • Car Seat Safety: Common Mistakes & Top Tips
    Celebrity mom, Ali Landry and our safety experts talked about common (yet fixable) mistakes parents make when choosing and installing car seats for all ages.
  • Ask the Expert: Rear-Facing, Forward-Facing and Booster Car Seats (In English and Spanish)
    Our experts answered questions and talked about common and easy-to-fix mistakes to make children safer in their various car seats.

Viewers can ask questions in the comments which helps keep the session interesting and interactive. Some of the most Frequently Asked Questions during our Facebook Lives included:

  • Is one car seat safer than the other?
  • I’ve heard different things about used car seats. Are they OK to use?
  • How important is it to register the car seat?
  • My baby is getting too big for his/her infant car seat, can I move them to a forward-facing car seat?
  • How do I know when I need to adjust the harness?
  • My child is 4 or 5 years old, which booster seat would be best for them? (High back versus no back booster)

Many have asked what platform we have been using recently for our Facebook Live broadcasts. We are using a program named Streamyard. To learn more go to: https://streamyard.com. It is quick, easy, and does have a free version.

Remember that your Facebook Lives may not always run 100% smoothly (we have sure had some surprises). But you are getting the message out to viewers and everyone with virtual experience knows and understands that glitches may occur. Sometimes it’s even more fun that way.

A few helpful tips and lessons we have learned include:

  • Pick topics of interest for your viewers.
  • Have a practice session with your presenters.
  • Log in with your presenters 15 minutes ahead of time to work through any technical issues.
  • Keep it short and simple. 15-20 minutes keeps your audience engaged.
  • Have fun with it! Glitches may happen, but that is the fun of a live session.

Be safe and stay healthy!

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


Be a Gamer!

During this time when life is still not quit back to normal, I thought everyone would enjoy something a bit different. This is a great teaching tool, which can be used for your technicians to help learn in a fun, less stressful way. Creating crossword puzzles and picking your own words and clues can easily be done using many free puzzle creators by a simple google search. After trying a few, I created this one with “The Teacher’s Corner” because it allowed for longer clues to be used. Other options are customized word searches, brain teasers and the all favorite jeopardy game. Try one of these games during your next technician gathering to spur additional discussion and lots of laughs.

Here is one I made with CPS basics.

Have fun and stay safe!

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


Reminder: Seat Belt Entanglement

Recently in the news, an eight-year-old child in Massachusetts was nearly the victim of seat belt entanglement strangulation. It took the heroic actions of his mother, who was able to free him and perform CPR to save his life. Seat belt entanglement occurs most often when a child pulls a belt with a switchable retractor all the way out, so the retractor locks, causing the belt to tighten dangerously around a child’s neck (LATCH Manual 2019, p. 29). Seat belt entanglement and adjacent belts, among all the issues that CPS technicians should mention while educating parents and caregivers, may sometimes fall to the end of the list. Here’s a quick reminder of the prevention tips for this issue and why it’s important to share during any car seat check.

Prevention Tips

  • Do not let children play in or around cars.
  • Always ensure children are properly restrained while in the vehicle.
  • Teach children that seat belts are not toys.
  • Be aware that some seat belts have a retractor that locks if pulled all the way out.
  • If a child has an unused seat belt within reach, buckle unused seat belts. Pull the seat belt out all the way to the end without yanking. Then, feed the excess webbing back into the retractor.
  • Seat belt entanglement can happen in the blink of an eye. Never leave your children alone in or around a vehicle for any reason.

This is important to note for car seats that are installed with LATCH, because often the lap and shoulder belt is unused in that seating position. Children may be able to reach the belt and engage the switchable retractor. This can also be a concern for children who ride in booster seats, or older children who use the lap and shoulder belt. If a child is consistently playing with the belt, consider that they may not be behaviorally ready to ride in a booster seat and consider a car seat with a harness instead. (LATCH Manual 2019, pg. 29). Additionally, specific guidance is also located in the LATCH manual, by both the child restraint manufacturers (Appendix A) and vehicle manufacturers (Appendix B).

Additional information for in-and-around car issues can be found at: https://www.nhtsa.gov/road-safety/child-safety

Laura Dunn, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration  (Washington, DC)


Reminder: Recert alternatives

As you read about in the last CPS Express, Safe Kids Worldwide understands that the ability to complete the 5 seat checks and, for instructors, 20 teaching hours, required for recertification may not be feasible in this time of COVID-19. After speaking with several of you in the field to better understand the full scope of the issue, we have made changes to the Recertification Policy.

We have also created a COVID-19 Recertification Policy FAQ document and posted step by step instructions (video and PDF).


CEU Resources


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.

Scientific Substantiation for Heightless Booster Seats // The all-new and improved mifold Comfort™
Thursday, November 19, 2020
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET (1 CEU)
Register Now

Head, shoulders, knees, and toes: How pediatric anatomy affects injuries
Thursday, December 10, 2020
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET (1 CEU)
Register Now

More webinars coming soon! Updates posted on Facebook.


For Instructors

Teaching Hours and Community Education Webinars: Build More Options

The challenge of earning our required 20 teaching hours with the drastic reduction of CPST courses is why Safe Kids has provided an alternative. As described in the Policy Addendum: CPST Recertification and COVID-19, CPST Instructors can replace unearned teaching hour with a series of approved community education webinars on the CPS Board website. These webinars focus on improving course management and communication. While there are quite a few to choose from, you may be able to add to the video library.

As CPST instructors, you have special experience and expertise that you can share as webinars. They don’t need to be long. For example, Microaggressions: A mini webinar on tiny insults and dismissals and Using Technology Curbside: Creating an Electronic Toolkit are each just 20 minutes.

If you have tips and tricks to share, let us know! We’d love to record a webinar so other CPSTs and CPSTIs can learn from you! Email Stephanie with your ideas, suggestions, or to volunteer!


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 cpscert@safekids.org.

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.

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WASHINGTON, DC 20037 | PHONE: 877-366-8154