The following guidelines are established to implement Board policy on transportation.
A. Administrative Responsibilities
The Director of Transportation is responsible for the planning, operating, and maintenance of all Corporation vehicles. Included within this scope of responsibility are:
1. establishment of bus routes;
2. management of dispatching operations;
3. supervising and analyzing vehicle maintenance programs;
4. preparing and submitting all State/Federal reports;
5. bus driver personnel selection, supervision, and training;
6. development of specifications for bids on contracted services;
7. verification of qualifications of bus drivers.
Quality transportation services require cooperation and effective communication with the principal who shall be responsible for:
1. supervision at bus loading and unloading zones;
2. communication to parents and students concerning student behavior, safety, schedules, and the like;
3. adjudication of all behavior problems;
4. enforcement of traffic regulations on the school site;
5. communication about overcrowding and unsafe conditions or practices to the Director of Transportation.
B. Bus Conduct
1. Parents are to be informed that school bus transportation is a privilege and not a right and that the bus driver is the sole authority on the bus while students are being transported.
2. Parents are also to be informed that they are responsible for:
a. the safety of their child while going to or from the bus stop and while waiting for the school bus;
b. their child being at the bus stop at least five (5) minutes prior to scheduled pick-up time;
c. damage by their child to school buses, personal property, or public property.
3. Students are expected to conduct themselves in a proper manner at bus stops. The Corporation will not enter into disputes involving parents and/or students concerning matters that take place prior to the student boarding the school bus, or after the student has disembarked from the bus on his/her way home.
4. Students will ride only assigned school buses and will board and depart from the bus at assigned bus stops. Students will not be permitted to ride unassigned buses for any reason other than an emergency, except as approved by the Supervisor of Transportation.
5. A change in a student's regular assigned bus stop may be granted for a special need, if a note from a parent is submitted to the principal stating the reason for the request and the duration of the change and the Director of Transportation approves.
6. A permanent transfer to another route or bus stop for morning pick-up and/or afternoon drop-off will only be made upon the approval of the Supervisor of Transportation.
7. Students shall cross all streets at least ten (10) feet in front of the school bus and after the driver has signaled the student that it is all right to do so.
8. For the safe operation of the school bus, noise on buses shall be kept at a minimum with students speaking in reasonable conversation voices. Students must be quiet at railroad crossings and other danger zones as designated by the bus driver.
Both the use of a bus radio and the station or programs which students listen to must be approved by the Director of Transportation.
9. The following cargo is forbidden to be transported on a school bus: pets, alcoholic beverages, drugs, ammunition, explosives, firearms, knives, or any other dangerous materials or objects. If there is a question on the transportation of a particular item, the Director of Transportation should be consulted.
C. Student Surveillance
In accord with Board policy, the Director of Transportation may install the appropriate equipment for audio or video recording in the interior of the buses while transporting students. S/He should follow the Corporation's purchasing practices in obtaining such equipment and abide by the following guidelines for the use of such equipment:
1. Arrange for the installation of a box in a location on each bus that will allow for the camera to record all students.
2. Develop a plan whereby the camera(s) is installed in the box on a rotating basis and so students are not aware of the installation.
3. Record the date, time, and bus number of each video tape and maintain the tapes in a secure location for a period not to exceed the school year.
4. Establish a procedure whereby no one observes a tape without the prior authorization of the appropriate principal who shall ensure that any observation is done only by those who are authorized to view student records and is conducted in accord with Administrative Guideline 8330 - Student Records.
Any disciplinary action resulting from the use of the video tapes shall be determined by the appropriate principal who shall ensure that due process is provided to the students involved, in accordance with Board policy and administrative guidelines relating to discipline. Any use of photographs obtained through the use of video tapes shall be in accordance with Federal and State law.
The Director of Transportation shall be responsible for reviewing the tapes for the purpose of assuring that bus safety procedures are being followed properly and the buses are being operated in accord with Corporation guidelines and State law.
D. Special Services
In compliance with Board policy, the transportation services may be provided for field trips, co-curricular trips, and extra-curricular trips, including athletics.
Transportation may be provided on weekends and holidays to Corporation students who are participating in approved School Corporation programs which are under the supervision of professional staff members.