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Bus Safety

Students transported on a school bus shall be under the authority and responsibility of the driver of the bus. The disciplining authority of each school shall enforce the specified bus rules and regulations upon the referral of any school bus driver. Disorderly conduct or persistent refusal to submit to the lawful directions of the driver shall be sufficient reason to be subject to disciplinary action.

All school bus riders are subject to the provisions of the student handbook and the “Safety Rules for Riding School Buses.” This information is sent home with the student at the beginning of each school year.

Violation of the regulations listed within the Safety Rules for Riding School Buses may result in disciplinary action consisting of the following: (a) a conduct notice, (b) a disciplinary notice, (c) a suspension notice for a set number of days (10 school days maximum), and (d) a suggested expulsion notice, or revocation of the privilege of participation (ridership). In addition to or in lieu of this disciplinary action, the disciplining authority may impose disciplinary measures in the nature of after-school work, repair of or payment for physical damage caused by students, cleanup and/or painting of areas of physical damage caused by students, or court action.

Any person, whether a student or not, is prohibited from entering or remaining upon any school property, including school buses, when (1) an authorized individual gives directions to vacate the property; or when (2) a notice, posted at a place where it reasonably may be seen, contains such information. Persons violating the provision may be proceeded against in court.

Bringing Bulky Items Aboard the Bus
Bulky items may be brought onto the bus as long as they can safely fit into the seating compartment and do not pose a safety hazard or occupy space needed for a rider.  Large items that the student cannot hold, such as projects, sports equipment, or large band instruments should be transported by private vehicle.  

Items not Permitted on the Bus
The use or possession of tobacco, alcohol, drugs, glass containers or weapons of any type is prohibited on the bus.  Further, buses may not display stickers, and for the safety of all passengers, items cannot be displayed on the dashboard.  No animals (including pets), chemicals, dangerous or sharp items that could damage property or inflict harm to passengers.  

While walking to and waiting for the bus,


Take the safest route to the assigned bus stop - walk safely.. don't run.  Stay on the sidewalk or, if there is no sidewalk, stay as far as  possible from the traffic.  Always walk facing the oncoming traffic.  Cross the streets only at intersections or crosswalks. 
Arrive at the bus stop no more than five minutes prior to the scheduled bus arrival time
Wait in a safe place off the main street
Remain in the assigned loading area maintaining an orderly behavior
Wear bright clothing if there is snow, rain, or fog
Stand back from the street or road and give the bus driver room to stop.


Trespass on private property or litter...NEVER
Play in the street or roadway - no horseplay.  Do not run around or play while waiting for the bus.  You or a schoolmate may be hit by motorists or cause an accident if a car must swerve to avoid you.  
Sit on the curb
Run toward a moving bus as it approaches the bus stop or loading zone at school

When boarding the bus, and before crossing the street or road,


Check the traffic in both directions
Wait until the bus driver signals to cross...stay at least 12 feet away from the designated stopping location.
Getting on the bus --
Form a single line as the bus approaches
Walk in front of the waiting bus
Wait until the bus comes to a full stop - the red lights are on and the front door has opened.  Be sure that all traffic has come to a complete stop.
The bus driver will give the "thumbs up" signal when it is safe to cross.  
Enter the bus single file, using the handrail, and let younger students enter first.
Go directly to your assigned seat and remain seated


Tamper with the bus or any of its equipment, including emergency equipment
Show disrespect to the bus driver, bus attendants, or other students
Cross the street behind the bus

While the Bus is in Motion,


Remain seated until the bus reaches its destination and comes to a complete stop
Keep all parts of the body and other objects inside the bus
Use a good sitting posture as you would in the classroom.
Keep the aisle clear of feet, arms, and other objects
Hold books, coats, and all other objects in lap
Talk only in a normal voice
Be quiet at railroad crossings, so the bus driver can hear railroad warning signals.
Identify yourself upon the request of the bus driver or other authorized personnel


Change seats
Push or roughhouse
Throw objects around on the bus or out of the window
Talk to the driver, except in an emergency
Open the emergency door without the driver’s permission, except in an emergency.
Show disrespect to the bus driver
Fight on the bus or at the bus stop

When the bus is unloading,


Remain seated until the driver opens the door
Permit the standees to unload first
Leave the bus in single file
Leave the bus and the unloading area promptly


Push or shove

If crossing the street,


Wait until the bus driver gives the signal to cross.
Walk in front and at least 10 feet ahead of the waiting bus
Stop when even with the front of the bus, and look carefully in both directions.
Cross quickly but do not run
Help smaller children to cross the road safely
Go directly to the driveway and always be in view of the driver.

Procedures for Handling Bus Accidents

Should a school bus be involved in an accident, the Department of Transportation follows set procedures.   Local police and paramedics are dispatched to any school bus accident with children on board, as well as a transportation supervisor. Required information is collected to file a report with our Department of Risk Management and Safety.  Should the accident occur on the way to school, the principal or designee will contact parents by phone or by letter.  

Related State Motor Vehicle Code impacting school bus services :

School buses shall stop, as required by law, at railway grade crossings.  The 4-way hazard lights should be activated when approaching the railway grade crossing and deactivated before crossing the track.  The bus driver should turn off any noisy equipment, open the entrance door of the bus and determine when it is safe for the vehicle to cross the railroad tracks.  The entrance door should be closed when the bus is in motion.  No stop needs to be made at any grade crossing when traffic is directed by a police officer or a green traffic -control signal as stated in Section 46.2-886 of the Code of Virginia.