Policy of the School Committee: File: EEA / 509STUDENT TRANSPORTATION SERVICES
The purpose of the school district’s transportation services is to aid students in getting to and from school and school related events in a safe, efficient, and economical manner.
The purpose of this policy is to achieve the above goals while providing the service in an as equitable manner as circumstances allow.
2. Contracted services
The district contracts for transportation services. Contracts will be awarded on a competitive bid basis. Bus contractors and van contractors, who will be held responsible for the safe operation of school vehicles, will comply with all applicable state laws and regulations, including but not limited to:
1. Specifications for school bus design and equipment
2. Inspection of buses
3. Qualifications and examinations of bus drivers
4. Driving regulations
5. Small vehicle requirements, if applicable
6. Insurance coverage
7. Adherence to local regulations and directives as specified in bid contracts.
The Superintendent of Schools and/or designee, working with the bus contractor and other appropriate administrators, will be responsible for establishing bus schedules, routes, stops, and all other matters relative to the transportation program.
3. Matters Covered By The Policy
This policy provides information on:
students’ rights to free transport to and from school
transport for after school programs
safety and safety tips
rules/expectations of students
4. Free Transportation
In accordance with the laws and regulations in effect for regional school districts, transportation will be provided for all students in Grades K through 12 enrolled in the district, regardless of the distance of their home to their school of attendance. Transportation is not provided for students who attend a school under the district’s school choice arrangements, regardless of whether the students are out of district or in-district residents.
5. Bus Passes
Bus passes will be issued to all students in grades 7 through 12 within the first two weeks of school. Once issued, students will not be allowed on buses without a pass. Students must ride the bus to which they have been assigned which will be detailed on the bus pass. There will be a fee of $10.00 for a replacement pass.
6. School Bus Stops: General
The school bus routes will be reviewed on an annual basis to take account of the distribution of students, demand and the efficient use of resources, and the length of journey times. Additional bus stops increase journey times and gas consumption, both of which we seek to minimize.
Parents/guardians are responsible for getting their child safely to the correct bus stop and for ensuring their safety while at the bus stop prior to pick-up and after drop-off.
Children will walk or be driven to a common stop serving a local area.
All Kindergarten and Grade 1 students must be met at the bus stop by an adult. Students not met will be brought back to school. Kindergarten and Grade 1 students will be assigned to a general common bus stop along with all other students.
The district is not resourced to provide a street-to-street or door-to-door pick-up or drop-off service. Due to safety restrictions, the minimum distance between any two stops will be no less than 100 yards, but will often be greater depending upon the density of the student population in a given area along the route. No student will be assigned to a bus stop that is further than one mile from their home.
Using GPS enabled routing software, the contractor, working with the district, will identify bus stops at safe locations that provide the greatest efficiency.
School bus drivers are not authorized to make changes, additions or deletions of any bus stops.
Bus routes will be published on the Triton Regional School District website at tritonschools.org/transportation by the week before school starts at the latest. An email will be sent to all listserve subscribers when the routes are posted.
7. Bus Stop Locations
The location of bus stops will be based upon the following criteria:
located at centralized locations where students may safely load and unload, cross highways, and await arrival of buses
consideration given road conditions, speed limits and traffic volume
adequate clear vision for pedestrians and traffic in each direction
located away from known hazards, i.e.: railroads, cliffs, rivers, high-speed highway on and off ramps, residences of known sexual offenders
buses do not need to back up to either enter or leave the location
within reasonable walking distances from students’ homes, and no more than 1 mile from a student’s home
journey times are reasonable given the resources available
the age and the number of students at the bus stop
whenever possible, near street corners or landmarks
on maintained public roads only
8. After School Programs – Late Busses
The District places great value in students’ having after school program opportunities. To enable more students to participate, the district will continue to provide late busses for those students participating in after school activities, events, or academic enrichment. These busses will begin running toward the end of September and will run through June. Late busses run Monday through Thursday and depart from the Middle and High School at approximately 3:45 p.m. These start times may be adjusted from year to year, with prior notice to all families, as ridership needs change based on after school programming.
Ridership of late bus runs varies from day to day based upon student schedules. In addition, there are only two busses that complete the route for each town from each school. This means that each bus is covering approximately half of the town. As such, the stops for late busses are far less frequent, and the routes may take considerable time. In order to keep route times down and provide a somewhat consistent schedule for parents/guardians wishing to pick up their children, consistent routes will be established for each school year and will be run each day. However, please be aware that flexibility in ridership will cause variance in times by as much as 10 to 15 minutes. Parents and guardians should plan accordingly.
9. Bus Riding Rules And Privileges
Terms and Conditions for bus riding privileges are as follows:
A bus pass may not be used by anyone other than the individual for whom the pass was issued.
For students in Grades 7 – 12, the bus pass must be shown upon boarding the bus.
The bus will be boarded in an orderly manner.
While riding on the bus, students are prohibited from moving about, throwing objects, or extending any part of their bodies outside of the bus, which could distract the driver from the safe operation of the vehicle.
Students are not permitted to open doors or windows without permission of the bus driver. Students are not to touch emergency exits, unless instructed to do so.
Smoking or lighting anything on the bus is prohibited by State Law; this also refers to drugs and alcohol.
Students may not use cell-phones on buses except in an emergency.
All school rules apply on the bus.
Students may not change buses or bus stops without prior approval of the main office of the school of attendance.
Riding the school bus is a privilege. Behavior issues will be dealt with in accordance to School Policy., which may include the suspension or the revocation of riding privileges.
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