Bus Conduct and Safety

For many students the school day begins and ends with a trip on the school bus. The greatest risk is not riding the bus, but approaching or leaving the bus. According to the National Safety Council, school buses are the safest form of ground transportation. In fact, they are about 40 times safer than the family car.

Teaching children how to be safe pedestrians is essential to school bus safety. Beginning with their first step as they leave the house, children must learn how to safely arrive at the school bus stop, board the bus, behave during the bus ride, and exit the bus.

Bus Safety

A student being transported in school-owned vehicles is required to comply with the West Platte Student Code of Conduct. Failure to comply with the SCOC or established safety rules while on school transportation may result in restrictions or forfeiture of transportation services as well as disciplinary action. Appropriate student behavior is as important on a school bus as in the classroom. Unlike a teacher, however, the bus driver is occupied primarily with driving the bus through traffic in all kinds of weather. When appropriate student behavior is maintained on the bus, passengers will have a safe, pleasant trip.

Safety Rules for Students Riding the Bus

Riding to and from school each day is a privilege, not a right. This privilege may be taken away if a student does not adhere to bus safety rules and cooperate with the driver and other school personnel at all times.

Expectations - Be Safe, Be Kind, Be Neat

  • Students should be at designated stop 10 minutes prior to the scheduled bus arrival time and be ready to board.

  • As the bus approaches, riders shall form a single line at least six feet away from where the bus stops.

  • Board the bus carefully and courteously.

  • Take a seat and remain seated while the bus is in motion.

  • Be courteous to other riders; do not try to save seats for friends.

  • Leave the bus carefully and courteously.

  • If a student is to ride a different bus or is to get off the bus at another stop, a "Request for Alternate Transportation" form must be completed one day in advance of the date requested for alternate transportation. Approval will be based on space availability, which will be determined by the Director of Transportation. If a student does not submit a completed form to the campus office one day in advance of the date requested, the student will be denied permission to ride on an alternate bus. (Forms are available through the bus driver, the campus, and the Transportation Department, as well as on this website.)

  • Report any problems on the bus to the bus driver, Director of Transportation, or school personnel.

  • Cooperate with the driver and other school personnel at all times.

  • All loose items must be stowed under the seat, including band instruments.

  • All students who use District transportation shall board buses at authorized stops only. Authorized stops shall be designated annually by the Superintendent or designee. Bus drivers shall load and unload passengers only at authorized stops.

Conduct Resulting in the Loss of Bus Privileges

  • Fighting, physical abuse or threat of physical abuse.

  • Throwing objects within the bus or out the window.

  • Possession of any controlled substance.

  • Possession or use of any object used to inflict bodily injury to a person including, but not limited to, guns, knives, chains, explosives or fireworks. Anything that resembles a weapon shall be considered as a weapon.

  • Extending body parts from the bus.

  • Boarding or leaving the bus through the emergency door unless there is an emergency.

  • Vandalism of any part of the inside or outside of the bus. In addition to being charged for the damages, further bus privileges may be denied.

  • Flagrant disrespect or disobedience to the driver.

  • Repeated infractions of bus safety rules.

Steps of Discipline for Bus Safety

  1. Verbal warning to student with notification to parent

  2. Written warning to student with notification to parent and campus disciplinary action

  3. One (1) school day in school suspension

  4. Three (3) school days suspension from the bus

  5. Five (5) school days suspension from the bus

  6. Ten (10) school days suspension from the bus

  7. Twenty (20) school days suspension from the bus

  8. Suspension from the bus for the remainder of the school year

Any subsequent infraction(s), regardless of the level of offense or the time, will result in the next level of disciplinary action.

Tips for Safe Bus Loading and Unloading

  • Get to the bus stop at least five minutes before the bus is scheduled to arrive, but not more than ten minutes.

  • When the bus approaches, stand at least 10 feet away from the curb, and line up away from the street.

  • Wait until the bus stops, the door opens, and the driver says that it's okay before stepping onto the bus.

  • If you have to cross the street in front of the bus, walk on the sidewalk or along the side of the road to a point at least 10 feet ahead of the bus, and watch for the bus driver to signal that it is safe before crossing the street.

  • Be sure that the driver can see you, and you can see the bus driver.

  • Use the handrails to avoid falls.

  • When exiting the bus, be careful that clothing with draw strings, and book bags with straps don't get caught in the handrails or doors.

  • Never walk behind the bus.

  • Walk at least 10 feet away from the side of the bus.

  • If you drop something near the bus, tell the bus driver. Never try to pick it up because the driver may not be able to see you.