Bus Safety Guidelines
School bus transportation is the safest means of over the road transportation in America. Putnam City Schools take pride in their safety record and in the service it provides. Buses are provided for those students who because of distance from the school or health make the service essential. Students and parents should read and understand the following guidelines.
Bus Safety Guidelines for Students
- All Putnam City District Policies apply to passengers boarding, riding, and departing from Putnam City School buses. Students using or possessing tobacco products, electronic cigarettes, vapes, alcohol, drugs, lasers, and/or weapons will be disciplined according to the District policies.
- All students must sit properly and safely while on the bus. Students should be sitting on their bottom in the seat facing forward. Students should NEVER be sitting on their knees, turned around facing backward, standing or walking in the aisle, standing on a seat, climbing over or crawling under seats while the bus is moving. Students who cannot follow these safety guidelines create a danger to themselves and will be subject to bus suspension.
- A parent/guardian should call the Putnam City Transportation Department at 789-3244 when asking for their student to ride another bus to and from school. The parent should call before l:00 p.m. on the day of the request. Some requests may be denied due to rider capacity of buses. Please do not call the school or write a note for the student to give to the driver when requesting a change in riding procedures.
- Students are required to use the bus stop nearest their home. Students must be at their bus stop five (5) minutes prior to the scheduled time ready to board. Any student failing to be on time will be responsible for their own transportation to school. Buses cannot return for late students due to time restrictions.
- Students shall remain back from the roadway while awaiting the arrival of the bus. They should refrain from throwing things or playing at a bus stop.
- Students shall enter the bus in an orderly fashion and go directly to a seat and remain seated until the destination is reached.
- Students must keep their hands, arms, and heads inside the bus at all times.
- Students must keep their hands to themselves and use an inside spoken voice.
- Bus riders are expected to be courteous to fellow students and the bus driver. The bus driver must be treated with respect like any school employee.
- Students should never throw any type of object while inside the bus. It is against the law to throw any object from a bus window.
- All articles such as athletic equipment, books, musical instruments, coats, backpacks, etc., must be kept out of the aisle. These items should be held on the student’s lap or placed on the floor between the student’s feet. Students are not to sit on back packs or musical instrument cases.
- Students are not to be eating or drinking while riding a bus. Eating and/or drinking while on the bus may result in choking, spilled food, sticky seats and floors, and health violations. Please wait until you are off the bus to open and eat food items.
- Students are not to write on seats, poke holes in seats, spit on the floor, or damage any bus equipment. Damage to the bus is subject to fines and charges to be paid in full by the student, family or guardian.
- Students should always check their seating area for books, lunches, phones, purses and other articles that have fallen out on the route. Articles left on the bus will remain on the bus until the next route occurs. A parent may call the Transportation office to see if property was found on the bus by the driver.
- Students should do everything to avoid a fight while on the bus. A fight may cause injury to those fighting and endanger the entire bus by distracting the driver. A student should stay on the bus if he/she feels that a fight will occur once they get off at their stop. The driver will keep the student on the bus until it is safe for departure.
- The emergency door and window latches are for emergency use only. Students must not touch safety equipment on the bus unless there is an emergency.
- Students must remain on the bus when there is a road emergency. Students must remain on a bus involved in a wreck until released by the nurse and local police.
- Students who must cross the street at a bus stop shall not do so until they receive a signal from the bus driver. When crossing a street is necessary, it shall always be done in front of the bus, far enough ahead of the bus so that the bus driver may adequately observe them. This means that the student should be able to see the face of the bus driver. The driver shall hold his bus with warning lights flashing until the crossing has been completed.
- All directions given by the bus driver are to be followed.
- Flowers, balloons and other party favors are not permitted on the bus because they create vision problems for the driver. Animals such as turtles, lizards, snakes, etc., or insects are not allowed on the bus as they may create a danger for other riders and distractions that may occur.
- It is against federal regulations for a bus driver to alter their route. Therefore, all students must board and unload at designated stops. Any alternate stops must be approved in advance with the Transportation Office.
- A regular route driver will make his/her first stop at the designated time as listed on the Putnam City web site under Transportation. All other stops will be made according to route assignments. Bus stop arrival times may be affected by weather, traffic congestion, and/or student discipline problems.
- We ask that each bus rider sign and return a “Parent/Student Application Form for Transportation Service.” This information allows the driver to know who is riding as well as notifying the parent/guardian of all bus policies. The form is handed out at the beginning of each school year by the driver and returned to the driver upon completion.
- The Putnam City School District operates buses for transportation of its student body based upon the following guidelines:
- Elementary and middle school students that live farther than one (1) mile from their school are eligible for bus service.
- High school students that live farther than l ½ miles from their school are eligible for bus service.
- Students who live within the walk boundary distance are not eligible for bus service.
Violation of bus safety guidelines may result in a student losing his/her privilege to ride any school bus. Loss of privileges to ride may include, yet not be limited to, one (1) day, multiple days, or the remaining days of the school year. Safety infractions may also result in other disciplinary action deemed necessary by school officials.
Responsibilities of Parents and Drivers
1. The school bus is considered an extension of the classroom. The Transportation Department has the authority and responsibility for the discipline of all children riding buses.
2. It is the parent’s responsibility to discuss with the child the bus safety guidelines and cooperate with district administration. These guidelines should be kept by the parent/guardian for reference during the school year.
3. It is the responsibility of the driver to provide the student with orientation regarding bus safety.
4. Drivers have the authority to enforce all bus rules. Any student refusing to obey these rules may be reported to transportation authorities and may lose bus-riding privileges.
5. If the behavior of the child riding the bus results in a bus suspension, it is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to arrange transportation to and from school until privileges are reinstated.
The Putnam City Transportation Department is located at 7111 N.W. 42nd. Office hours are 6 a.m. until 5 p.m. The phone number is 789-3244.