Avery County Schools Policy Policy Code: 6305


Safety is of paramount concern in providing student transportation services. The board recognizes that providing safe transportation requires the cooperation of students, parents, volunteers, personnel and other governmental agencies. The superintendent or designee and all principals are responsible for making reasonable efforts to inform affected individuals or entities about safety issues and monitor compliance with legal requirements and this policy.


   A safe and orderly environment is critical whenever transporting students. All board policies
   on student behavior apply as provided in board policy 4300, Student Behavior Policies.
   Students will receive training on school bus safety as required by law regardless of whether
   they regularly ride a school bus to and from school.

B. Transportation Safety Assistants and Bus Monitors

   Upon recommendation of a building principal and the superintendent, the board may employ
   transportation safety assistants to assist bus drivers with the safety, movement, management
   and care of students. In addition, the superintendent or designee may appoint a volunteer
   monitor to assist a bus driver with maintaining order and student safety for any bus assigned
   to a school. As necessary, the superintendent or designee shall designate in administrative
   guideline the responsibilities of school bus transportation safety assistants and bus monitors
   in accordance with state law.


   The superintendent or designee and principals shall fulfill all duties prescribed by state law
   and regulations for maintaining, inspecting and repairing school buses and other vehicles
   used to transport students.


   In addition to any rules established by the superintendent or designee for the safe operation
   of the student transportation services, the board expects school employees to observe the
   following practices.

       1. All school bus drivers must utilize the North Carolina crossing signal to
          communicate to students when it is safe to cross the street to board the bus and when
          it is safe to cross the street after exiting the bus.
       2. The number of students transported on any school bus, activity bus, commercial bus
          or contracted vehicle will not exceed the official rated capacity for the specific
          vehicle being used.

Avery County Schools Policy Code: 6305 Page 1 of 2 Policy Code: 6305

       3. All riders must be seated while the vehicle is in motion.
       4. No person will be permitted to stand or sit in the aisle or stepwell when the vehicle is
              in motion.
       5. All school bus drivers are expected to use good judgment in determining whether it is
          safe to operate a school vehicle, and to permit students to enter or leave the bus at
          particular locations.
       6. Bus drivers must report immediately any suspected mechanical defects or other
          unsafe conditions, including road or traffic conditions which affect the safeness of
          the bus route or bus stops.


   It is the responsibility of the superintendent or designee to see that:

       1. students and bus drivers receive training as required by law, including training on the
          use of the North Carolina crossing signal;
       2. students taking trips on activity buses or commercial buses receive safety instruction
          as needed, including, but not limited to, instruction on and demonstration of
          emergency exit operation for the vehicle on which they are riding for any specific
          trip; and
       3. records of student training are made as required by the State Board of Education.


  The driver of any school bus or other school vehicle must report immediately to the
  superintendent or designee any accident involving death, injury, or property.

Legal References: G.S. 115C-239, -240, -245, -248, -249.1; Preventive Maintenance and Vehicle Replacement Manual (NC Bus Fleet Manual), State Board of Education Policy TRAN-005, available at www.ncbussafety.org/documents/Buses/NCBusFleetManual.pdf; State Board of Education Policies TRAN-006, TRAN-011; North Carolina School Bus Driver Handout, Department of Transportation, Division of Motor Vehicles, available at http://www.ncdot.gov/dmv/license- id/driver-licenses/new-drivers/Documents/School%20Bus%20Handbook.pdf

Cross References: Student Behavior Policies (policy 4300), Authority of School Personnel (policy 4301), School Plan for Management of Student Behavior (policy 4302), Disruptive Behavior (policy 4315)

Adopted: 8/05/02

Revised: 04/16/12; 04/28/17; 09/10/19