Spring Branch ISD Featured News

After 50 years of service, long-time bus driver receives celebration fit for a King


Thank you, Ms. King! from SBISD on Vimeo.


In 1972, a nervous Ruth King drove her station wagon to the Department of Public Safety to take her driving test to become a bus driver. She was eager to receive the license and excited when she passed. 

Ms. King recalls arriving at Spring Branch ISD's Transportation Department and getting her own bus's keys. 

Recently, Ms. King celebrated her 50-year anniversary as a bus driver at SBISD. 

"A lot has changed in the past 50 years, but one thing has remained the same, the strong sense of community at SBISD," said Ms. King. "My team has supported me through my husband and my son's passing and through cancer, I am very grateful for them. At 80 years old, I continue to wake up excited daily to greet students and ensure they are safely transported to and from school." 

To celebrate her 50-year work anniversary, the SBISD community came together to plan King's Day.

On Dec. 9, King's Day began with a reception filled with friends and family, who wore shirts with Ms. King's picture. The room was filled with balloons and flowers and on the wall, a banner thanked her for her continuous commitment to SBISD. 

During the event, one by one, her friends and family read messages of appreciation. After hearing from attendees, Ms. King addressed the audience, described her time at SBISD as a train ride, and concluded that she would "not be getting off the train" anytime soon. 

"Ms. King is a model bus driver. She is loving, caring and dependable and always goes above and beyond. She welcomes our students with a smile every day and ensures they are ready for success," said Sherri Lawson, director of SBISD's Transportation Department. "Ms. King embodies Collective Greatness; I am grateful to have her on our team." 

After the reception, Ms. King was welcomed by Dr. Jennifer Blaine, SBISD superintendent, and members of the SBISD Board of Trustees, who thanked her for her dedication to the district and for always transporting students safely. 

At Spring Woods High School (SWHS), Ms. King had her very own pep rally and was celebrated alongside the band, cheerleaders and dance team. She was invited to the stage and the crowd cheered her on while she waved at the students she has transported daily for years. 

"We are so thankful for her! For 50 years she has started our students' days with a smile and has touched so many of their lives," said Jennifer Collier, SWHS principal. "Congratulations Ms. King, for 50 years!" 

Ms. King's next stop was Pine Shadows Elementary, where she was welcomed with a cake and a personalized shirt that read King of the Road. But the surprises did not end there. Chris Winstead, Pine Shadows principal, invited Ms. King outside, where posters and a balloon wall waited for her. As she hugged and thanked the staff for her gifts, Ms. King reminisced on her time at Pine Shadows as a parent, when her sons attended the school. 

"Today is a special day; we want to congratulate and honor Ms. King for 50 years of being a bus driver!" said Winstead. "I met Ms. King 11 years ago and her happy and positive attitude has always remained. She is loving and caring and always willing to help. Ms. King truly embodies Every Child because every one of them is special and important to her." 

The last stop of the day was Spring Oaks Middle School. Ms. King patiently awaited the arrival of the students, when the Spring Oaks band teachers came to serenade her. She was then handed an empty flower vase and one by one her students put a flower in the vase as they entered the bus. 

Ms. King's vase quickly filled with colorful flowers. But, as the last student came forward she screamed in excitement. The student handed her a framed drawing of a bus, with student fingerprints all across it. 

"I've had a lot of memorable days at SBISD throughout my 50 years and this is definitely one of them!" added Ms. King. "Today has been filled with great surprises and I am grateful to my team, who is always there to help me. I am proud to be part of SBISD." 

As Ms. King climbed the bus stairs, students clapped and cheered for her, congratulating her for 50 years. With a big smile, as she always has, Ms. King sat in her seat and honked as she drove off into the distance. 

Congratulations for 50 years Ms. King. We are #SBISDProud of you! 

See the full album of celebrations!