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Newport-Mesa USD |  AR  5131.1  Students

Bus Conduct   

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Bus Rider Rules

The following rules apply at all times when students are riding a school bus, including when on school activity trips:

1. Riders shall follow the instructions and directions of the bus driver at all times.

(cf. 3542 - School Bus Drivers)

2. Riders should arrive at their designated bus stop on time and stand in a safe place at the stop to wait quietly for the bus.

(cf. 3541 - Transportation Routes and Services)

3. Riders shall enter the bus in an orderly manner and go directly to their seats.

4. Riders shall sit down and fasten any passenger restraint systems. Riders shall remain seated while the bus is in motion.

5. Riders shall not block the aisle or emergency exit with their body or personal belongings. Riders may bring large or bulky items, such as class projects or musical instruments, on the bus only if the item does not displace any other rider or obstruct the driver's vision.

6. Riders should be courteous to the driver and to fellow passengers. Vulgarity, rude, or abusive behavior is prohibited.

7. Any noise or behavior that could distract the driver, such as loud talking, scuffling or fighting, throwing objects, or standing or changing seats, is prohibited and may lead to suspension of riding privileges.

(cf. 5144 - Discipline)

8. Riders shall not use tobacco products, eat, or drink while riding the bus.

(cf. 5131.62 - Tobacco)

9. Riders may bring electronic devices onto the bus only if such devices are permitted at school. If the use of cellular telephones or similar devices disrupts the safe operation of the school bus, the bus driver may direct the student to no longer use the device on the bus.

(cf. 5131 - Conduct)

10. Riders shall not put any part of the body out of the window nor throw any item from the bus.

11. Riders shall help keep the bus and the area around the bus stop clean. Riders shall not damage or deface the bus or tamper with bus equipment.

12. Service animals are permitted on school transportation services; all other animals are prohibited. (Education Code 39839; 13 CCR 1216)

(cf. 6163.2 - Animals at School)

13. Upon reaching their destination, riders shall remain seated until the bus comes to a complete stop and upon the signal from the driver, unfasten any restraint system, enter the aisle, and go directly to the exit.

14. Riders should be alert for traffic when leaving the bus and shall follow the district's transportation safety plan when crossing the road and exiting the bus.

(cf. 3543 - Transportation Safety and Emergencies)

15. In order to keep to a schedule, the bus driver cannot wait for late-arriving students. Parents are asked to have students at the bus stop five minutes prior to the assigned time.

16. The bus driver will drop home-bound students at their regular stops. If a student is to get off at any other stop, or go home with someone else, he/she must have a permission slip to do so (obtained from the principal's office).

17. Parent's must submit a "Request for Alternate Delivery" form, if there is a temporary need for the student to be bused to another existing bus stop. With site approval, this form will serve as an emergency bus pass for the day. Other changes of service address will require up to five days to modify routes and notify all involved.

18. When it is necessary to cross a street after leaving the bus, the student must cross in front of the bus while the flashing red lights are in operation and under the direction of the bus driver.

The driver or any passenger shall report any violation of the district's bus rules to the appropriate transportation administrator. The transportation department will communicate this information to the site principal or designee with recommendations for consequences. The principal or designee shall notify the student's parent/guardian of the misbehavior and take action accordingly. In instances of a severe violation or repeated offenses, the rider may be denied transportation for a period of time determined appropriate by the principal or designee.

Bus drivers shall not deny transportation services except as directed by the transportation department.

Disciplinary Action

Transportation is a privilege offered by the district. It is available to students who conduct themselves in an acceptable manner while walking to or from the bus stop, waiting for, boarding, leaving or riding on the bus. This privilege may be denied to students who do not observe the rules. It should be noted that denial of transportation privileges has no affect on the obligation of parents/guardians to ensure the attendance of students.

It is recognized that the principal of a school is in a better position than the bus driver to counsel with students and parents/guardians when unacceptable behavior is observed and reported. The principal may withdraw the privilege of bus transportation for willful and persistent refusal to follow rules of conduct.

The following guidelines will be used in processing rule infraction bus referrals:

1st referral - Student will be counseled at the school

2nd referral - one to five day bus suspension

3rd referral - three days up to a semester bus suspension

When serious violations occur, even on the first offense, the student may be suspended from riding for the duration of the school year.

Rules for Students and Adult Supervisors on Field Trips

In order to provide a safe and positive learning experience it is expected that there will be a cooperative effort on the part of the teacher escort and the bus driver.

1. At no time will the driver move the bus from the premise without a responsible adult(s) or teacher(s) on the bus with the exception of Intra-district trips.

2. The bus driver will see to the operation of the bus and will inform the teacher or responsible adult(s) in case the students are behaving in an unsafe manner.

3. Decisions of route directions shall be the bus driver's responsibility.

4. No one is allowed to stand while the bus is moving.

5. No bus driver is expected to supervise students once the destination has been reached.

Bus Surveillance Systems

The Superintendent or designee shall monitor the use and maintenance of the district's bus surveillance system. Students are prohibited from tampering with the bus surveillance system. Any student found tampering with the system shall be subject to discipline and shall be responsible for the costs of any necessary repairs or replacement.

(cf. 3515.4 - Recovery for Property Loss or Damage)

(cf. 5131.5 - Vandalism, Theft and Graffiti)

Cameras may be rotated among the buses and activated at the discretion of the Superintendent or designee.

The content of any recording is a student record and may only be accessed in accordance with the district's policy and administrative regulation concerning student records.

(cf. 5125 - Student Records)

(cf. 5125.1 - Release of Directory Information)


approved: September 8, 2009 Costa Mesa, California