School Bus Rules

The rules presented here are an excerpt from the current Code of Student Conduct available here.

The District School Board of Pasco County provides free transportation to and from school for students who live more than two miles away from school. Students will be assigned one bus pass. Parents/guardians are responsible for their child(ren) at the bus stop. Once the bus arrives at the stop, and only at that time, does the student become the responsibility of the District School Board of Pasco County. Such responsibility shall end when the student is delivered to the regular bus stop and the bus has departed, at the close of the school day. Each student using that transportation must abide by the rules, which are established to insure the safety of all passengers. When waiting for the bus, loading or unloading, students must follow the Code of Student Conduct. Bus drivers will report students who violate the Code of Student Conduct, and break school bus rules to the school administration for appropriate disciplinary action. Administrators shall investigate and issue discipline accordingly. Behavior not directly observed at bus stops, but reported and confirmed by witnesses, may be acted upon.

Code of Student Conduct

Violations of the Code of Student Conduct shall result in disciplinary action, suspension of riding privileges, recommended bus expulsion, and may result in referral to law enforcement. Teachers who chaperone bus trips will have the same authority and responsibilities as they have in the classrooms. Parent conferences are not permitted while the bus is in route or stopped at a bus stop. Any conference that the parents wish to have with the bus driver must be scheduled with the school’s administration.
The following bus rules will be obeyed:

  • The bus driver is in full authority and must be obeyed.
  • Students are required to obey driver’s hand signals when crossing the road.
  • Students are required to wear safety restraints, when they are available on the bus.
  • General school rules will apply on the bus, although quiet talking is permitted.
  • Students will be at the bus stop five minutes prior to scheduled time.
  • Students will stand off the roadway while waiting for the bus.
  • Students will board and leave the bus at their assigned bus stops unless other arrangements are made by written request of the parent and signed by the principal or designee.
  • Students will not distract the bus driver.
  • Students will sit properly and remain seated while the bus is in motion.
  • Students will not throw or project anything inside or out of the bus.
  • Students will not litter, mark, deface, or damage any part of the bus.
  • Students will sit in any seat assigned to them.
  • Students will not eat, drink, or smoke on the bus.
  • The emergency exit will be used only in cases of emergency.
  • No animals (dead or alive), glass or glass containers, sharp objects, ball bats, cutting instruments, batons, drumsticks, or other objects that could become dangerous projectiles during a sudden stop or accident will be allowed on the bus without prior permission of the driver.
  • Large objects (larger than students can safely hold in their laps), including band instruments, which interfere with seating and safety of others, will not be permitted on the bus without prior permission of the driver.
  • Students will not exit the rear emergency door of the school bus, other than in an emergency situation as determined by the bus driver.
  • Students will not engage in behaviors that could negatively impact the safety of those on board the bus.

The above rules will also apply on extra-curricular and athletic trips.

The following procedural interventions are recommended when appropriate:

  1. First offense: Parent contact and disciplinary action as decided by principal or designee.
  2. Second offense: 3-day bus suspension.
  3. Third offense: 5-day bus suspension.
  4. Fourth offense: 10-day bus suspension. At the fourth referral, there will be a review of the students behavioral and intervention history, which will culminate in the development of an intervention plan for the student. The parents will be invited to participate in this review.
  5. Fifth offense: Recommendation of bus expulsion.

The following may result in a recommendation for bus expulsion at any time:

  • Exiting the rear emergency door.
  • Any action that endangers the safety of anyone on or around the bus.
  • Continuous disruptive behavior.

Severity of the offense, extenuating circumstances, and the attitude of the student and parent will be considered by school administration and may be discussed with the Director of Transportation before a final determination is made.

 

Legal Notice: Parents, students, and employees should regularly visit the public registry to review it for individuals who may have prior criminal records and sex offenses. Information concerning registered sex offenders and predators in Florida may be obtained by visiting http://www.fdle.state.fl.us, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Sexual Offenders database. Information may also be obtained by contacting the FDLE’s toll free telephone number: 1-888-FL-PREDATOR (1-888-357-7332).


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Kurt S. Browning, Superintendent of Schools
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