Hamden Public Schools District Policies

3541.6 - Transportation: Regulations for School Bus Passengers

Regulations for School Bus Passengers

Student behavior waiting for school buses in the morning, riding on buses, and between bus stops and homes in the afternoon is of continual concern because of the potential for injury to children caused by inappropriate behavior. School personnel and bus drivers will periodically review bus behavior with children in classrooms, at assemblies, and on the buses; parents are also asked to discuss proper behavior in these situations with their children. The following regulations have been developed for students waiting for school buses and boarding them in the morning, on the buses at any time, and on the way home after leaving the buses in the afternoon.

Waiting for School Buses and Boarding

Students should be at the bus stops on time in the mornings and should start out early enough so that running to catch buses is unnecessary.

While at the bus stops, students should stand or wait in safe areas, not running into or playing in the streets. Students should not push, shove, fight, or engage in other disorderly behavior; private property at the bus stops should be respected.

As the school bus approaches, students should form a line and wait until the bus comes to a full stop before boarding. Unless special seats are assigned by the driver or principal, students should sit in the nearest seat available upon entering the bus and move toward the window so that three students can fit in the seat. Although school principals will help to the extent possible, student's behavior at the bus stops is a parental responsibility. The school assumes responsibility from the time students board buses until they leave them in the afternoon.

On the Buses

The bus driver is fully occupied driving the bus safely and being alert to traffic, pedestrian, and other hazards without being distracted by improper student behavior. Therefore, it is particularly important that students abide by common sense rules of safety and courtesy. For example, the following are unacceptable and prohibited behaviors:

1. discourtesy or disobedience to the driver

2. lingering in the aisles upon boarding the bus

3. changing seats

4. standing up before the bus comes to a full stop

5. kneeling or standing in the seats

6. interfering with a free flow of traffic in the bus aisle

7. fighting, shouting, throwing objects, or other disorderly actions

8. blocking or manipulating the emergency door

9. leaning out of windows or extending arms or hands outside of windows

10. carrying pets on the bus

11. smoking or eating on the bus

12. damaging or littering the bus

Leaving Buses and Returning Home

Once students depart from buses, they should go directly home and be alert for traffic hazards.

Responsibilities of the Bus Driver

1. No smoking on buses or on school grounds.

2. Be in the driver's seat when students enter the bus.

3. Check passes of secondary students before each trip.

4. Report all incidents, regardless of gravity, to the bus company and school administrators.

5. Meet with parents if request is made.

6. Check bus for vandalism after every route.

Responsibilities of Administrators

1. Enforce Board of Education regulations.

2. Board buses and warn students if a problem has occurred and a specific student cannot be identified.

Warn students that if disturbance continues, seats will be assigned for the remainder of the year. (Notify parents that this possibility exists, and send a copy of the notification to the superintendent.) Once seats are assigned, parents will be notified. Failure to sit in assigned seats will be reported and dealt with according to board rules.

3. Report vandalism to Central Office so that restitution can be made by students or parents.

Responsibilities of Students

1. Obey all rules and regulations concerning bus behavior and safety.

2. Remain seated at all times.

3. No smoking.

4. No harassment of bus driver or other students.

5. Use emergency door only in emergency situations. Use in non-emergency situations will result in referral to the Police Department as well as school discipline.

6. No damage to the bus. When the driver identifies individual students as causing damage, the students and their parents will be held financially responsible for the damage.


Regulation approved: January 11, 2005

HAMDEN PUBLIC SCHOOLS    Hamden, Connecticut