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Transportation for Students with Special Needs

This information applies to students who need special transportation services because of their disability or the location of their program.

Do all special-education students ride on special buses?

Special transportation will be provided for students who need it because of their disability or the location of their program. Otherwise they will ride the regular school bus or walk to school. Curb-to-curb bus service is arranged by the Transportation Office for students who need it. School-bus safety standards are always followed.

When will my child’s bus ride start?

Every effort is made to arrange transportation as quickly as possible. It takes an average of three to five working days for transportation to be arranged. When Student Support Services assigns a student to a program two weeks or less before school starts, a bus route may not be arranged by the start of school. Parents may be asked to transport their child for a maximum of two weeks with reimbursement from the District.

If I move, will my child ride the same bus?

An address change may require a bus change. Parents should call the Transportation Office in advance to give them the date of the move, the new address, and the phone number. Bus-route changes take three to five working days.

Can a student be picked up or dropped off at different locations each day?

Bus routes can only allow for one pick-up address and one drop-off address, five days a week. One-day changes cannot be made.

Will the pick-up and drop-off time change from day to day?

Special Education routes vary according to the needs of each student riding. Allow a five to 10 minute leeway both morning and afternoon.

What if my child’s needs change to being bused in a wheelchair or with special equipment?

A bus change may be necessary. Contact the child’s teacher so a change in transportation can be ordered and included in the Individual Education Program (IEP).

What are the bus driver’s responsibilities?

School-bus drivers are professional drivers with special training and Commercial Driver’s Licenses. They work for the School District through a bus company. They are responsible for driving the bus safely, transporting the students, and staying on time. If there is not a bus assistant, the driver performs the assistant’s duties.

What are school-bus assistants’ responsibilities?

Bus assistants work with drivers to ensure all students are safe on the bus. They secure seatbelts, wheelchairs, necessary supports, etc. Assistants maintain discipline, keep students in their seats, and report problems to the Transportation Office. They seek emergency medical help when needed.

Are there bus assistants on every bus?

No. When children are placed in special-education programs, their needs are assessed by a staff of specialists. Bus assistants are provided based on the nature and severity of a student’s disability.

Can a bus assistant come to the door to pick up or drop off a student?

Bus assistants are only permitted to work with children in and around the bus. They cannot assist a student beyond the curb.

What are my responsibilities?

Have your child fully clothed, toileted, and ready at the bus stop five minutes before the pick-up time. Tight routing does not allow time for buses to wait or blow the horn. Accompany your child to the curb. If your child will not be riding on any given day, call the Transportation Office or the bus company at least one hour before pick-up time so the bus driver can skip your stop. Notify the Transportation Office in advance if your address, phone number, or daycare arrangements change.

If my child misses the bus, can it come back?

The driver cannot come back because of traffic and other route responsibilities. Transport your child to school as quickly as possible.

What is my responsibility at drop-off time?

Be at the bus stop five minutes before the bus is scheduled to drop off your child. Students whose parents are not home or are not met by a responsible person will be taken to a District- designated site.

How can I support safe ridership?

Teach your child the school-bus safety rules and appropriate bus-riding behavior.

Why must I fill out an emergency information form?

State Board of Education rules require that the bus driver have emergency and health-related information on the bus for each student. Parents must provide this information. The form can be filled out at the student’s IEP meeting by school staff and parents together. This information is required before the student can ride the bus.

What behavior is expected by a student riding the bus?

For a safe and pleasant ride, the following rules must be followed:

  1. Immediately follow driver’s directions.
  2. Sit in your seat facing forward.
  3. Talk quietly and use appropriate language.
  4. Keep all parts of your body inside the bus.
  5. Keep your arms, legs, and belongings to your- self.
  6. No fighting, harassing, intimidating, or horse- play.
  7. Do not throw any object.
  8. No eating, drinking, or using tobacco.
  9. Do not damage the school bus.

Following these rules is very important for the safety of your child and others who ride the bus to and from school.

How are discipline problems handled?

A School Bus Discipline Report is filed immediately by the bus driver or bus assistant for any act that is considered dangerous or destructive. The school or Transportation Office responds to each report, taking appropriate action, such as seat assignment, use of a seat belt, suspension of busing privileges for a specified period of time, in- school consequences, or other disciplinary measures that would enforce safe conduct on the bus. The school or Transportation Office will contact you if such a report is filed.

What if a student cannot follow bus safety rules?

Alternate means of transportation may be necessary for students who cannot follow bus-safety rules. Their disruptive behavior creates an unsafe condition for other students, the bus driver, and the motoring public. The students’ safety is our primary concern. Safety concerns govern all decisions about transporting students.

Other General Information includes: 

  • Clean sidewalks of snow and ice to make the movement of your child to and from the bus safer and easier.
  • If your child becomes ill at school, soils him/herself by urinating or defecating, or for some other reason cannot be transported by bus, you will be expected to transport your child to and/or from school.

If you have additional questions or concerns about special education transportation, please call the Transportation Office or Student Support Services.

Transportation Office: (507) 328-4260

Student Support Services: (507) 328-4310