Student Transportation Handbook

Introduction

The guidelines and introductions contained in this handbook are provided in order to assure safe and enjoyable bus transportation experiences to and from school (and other school events) and outings.  Our school buses are extensions of the classroom and all rules and regulations established in the Student Code of Conduct (Board of Education Policy – 5149) apply when riding our buses.

Riding a bus is a privilege and convenience provided by Holland Public Schools.  If the following basic rules of safety and conduct are not followed, bus-riding privileges may be suspended.  Everyone’s cooperation and courtesy in adhering to these rules will allow us to better serve the Holland Public School community.

Thank you for your help.
Revised July 2007

Eligibility

  1. Only regularly enrolled students will be assigned to a bus.  Non-authorized riders are not permitted.  The building Principal must authorize any exception.
  2. Eligible students are based on distance from school which is determined by the Board of Education.
  3. Students must be registered and enrolled with their designated school so that the HPS Transportation Office has a record of the student.
  4. Kindergarten students must fill out a - HOLLAND PUBLIC SCHOOLS KINDERGARTEN TRANSPORTATION FORM. Kindergarten students cannot ride without their bus tags.
  5. Voluntary Internal Transfers are not eligible for transportation.
  6. If a student(s) has been absent for 7 or more days and the transportation office has not been notified, the stop will be dropped from the route.

Holland Public Schools Safety First

Basic Bus Riding Rules

  1. Obey the Bus Driver and other Adults on Bus
    1. Students must obey the instructions and directions of the school bus drivers, aides and activity sponsors.  The school bus drivers and sponsors are responsible for supervision of the students.
    2. Students must use the emergency door only during an emergency or with the permission of the bus driver or chaperone.
    3. Students will not possess, use, sell, or distribute illegal drugs, tobacco, marijuana, drug paraphernalia, alcohol, or illicit chemical substances (The Drug Free Schools and Communities Act, 1986).
    4. Boxes, packages, and instruments are to be held on the rider’s lap.  The aisle must be kept clear at all times.
    5. Pets and other animals may not be taken on the bus.  Any exception must be authorized by the Transportation Department.
  2. Remain Seated

The bus driver is authorized to assign seats.

Students must ride their assigned bus and get on and off the bus at their designated stops.
Students may not enter or leave a moving bus.
Students are not to extend any parts of their body or other objects out of the bus.
Students may not move around or change seats on the bus without permission.
Students are to face forward in their seats keeping their feet out of the aisle.

Use Quiet Voices

Students may not talk in a loud voice or create any other loud noises.  The driver may require silence at times for safety reasons.
Students may not swear or use inappropriate language and gestures.

Keep Hands and Feet to Yourself

Students may not rough house, push, or fight.
Students may not bother or tease others.
Students will not have in their possession weapons (real or pretend), explosives, or use any item to endanger the health and safety of others.

Keep the Bus Clean

Students are not to throw anything inside or out of the bus.
Students may not damage or vandalize the school bus.  Students, parents, and/or legal guardians will be required to pay for the repair of the damage.
Students may not eat, drink, or chew gum on the school bus without the permission of the bus driver.
Students may not litter on the school bus.

Special Education and ECC Bus Stops

If a student will not be riding the bus, it is the parents’ responsibility to call the transportation office and inform them.
If a student has been absent for three or more days and the transportation office has not been notified, the stop will be dropped from the route.

Rules for Bus Stop Conduct

Parents are responsible for student safety and behavior to and from the bus stop and at the bus stop until the school bus arrives.

 Be at the Bus Stop Early

Students are expected to leave home early enough to be at their bus stop 5-7 minutes before the scheduled arrival time of the bus.

Use Proper Behavior at the Bus Stop

Students are to conduct themselves with courtesy and consideration for others while waiting for the bus.  Students must not:  fight or bully others, throw snowballs or other objects at vehicles, destroy any property, trespass on private property, stand in the road, tailgate (run after or slide behind) a moving vehicle.
Pre-K, Young Fives, and Kindergarten students must be met by a responsible adult or family member.  The HPS Transportation Office needs to know the responsible person designated by the parent.

Obey Safety Guidelines

When walking to the bus stop, students should use the sidewalk and crosswalk or walk facing the traffic.
Students should wait at the bus stop at the assigned area as designated by the bus driver.
Students should wait until the bus has come to a complete stop before approaching it.  Board the bus in a single file line.  Do not punch, shove, or cut in line.

Disciplinary Procedures

Holland Public Schools does not discriminate in application of disciplinary procedures on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, age, sex, or handicap.

Due Process:

First Level – Written Warning.
Second Level – Suspension from bus for one school day.
Third Level – Suspension from bus for five school days.
Fourth Level – Suspension from bus for the remainder of the school year.

Appeal Process

The student and/or the parent/legal guardian of the student suspended from riding the bus may request a conference with the Principal and Transportation personnel.
The Transportration Supervisor and/or Princiapal shall affirm, modify, or remove the terms of the suspension within two school days after the conference.
The Transportation Supervisor shall notify the parent/legal guardian of the decision, the rationale for the decision and that a further appeal may be made in writing by the parent/legal guardian and/or eighteen-year-old student to the Superintendntn of School.
If no appeal is made within the time specified, the decision of the Supervisor/Principal shall be final.

Our school district uses video cameras on every bus. (The guidelines are below.)

In order to protect the health, welfare, and safety of students, staff, visitors and District property, electronic video surveillance systems may be used to monitor activity on District property. 

Placement of Camera

District property, which for purposes of this policy includes, but is not limited to, school buses that are owned, leased, contracted and/or operated by the District, may be equipped with electronic video surveillance systems. Video surveillance may occur in any District building or on any District property where the Superintendent deems appropriate. The district shall notify staff and students through student handbooks or other appropriate means (e.g. posting of notice) that video surveillance may occur on District property.

Use of Video

A video may be used by the District as evidence in any disciplinary action brought against any student or staff member arising out of the individual’s conduct on District property.

In the event that there is a possible concern from a bus driver, student, or parent, the administration will pull the video tape from the camera in question and follow the video viewing guidelines set forth in this document.

Review Policy for Administration

Contact is made of a concern.
Tape is retrieved at the earliest possible time.
Tape is review by Administration.
Investigate incident and any previous history of discipline or problems.
Identify disciplinary action to be taken within policy, if necessary.
Document and notify all parties of discipline or required information.
File tape and documentation at MTC, or at building where tape was initiated.

Review Policy for Parents

Parent Request to review tape.
Appointment is made to review tape at MTC.
Parent will view video clip of incident (only), with administration present.
Tapes will not be released to parents to protect privacy rights of other students.

Review Policy for Police

In the event that Police need to be involved in reviewing the tape.

Request for Police to review the tape.
Police review tape with administration.
Upon request, police will be issued a copy of the tape for evidence.

Holland Public Schools bus video tapes are in operation on all trips.  Each trip is held on video tape for 2 days prior to being disposed of, if no concerns are identified as problems.

Retention and Release of Video

The district will comply with all applicable state and federal laws related to the retention and release of public records.  A video will be retained by the District for a period of two (2) years, or until the conclusion of disciplinary proceedings if the video is used for evidence in a disciplinary proceeding.  A video that becomes a part of a student’s educational record will be released only in conformance with the Michigan Freedom of Information Act and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (20 USC 1232g)

Parents with questions/comments, please contact the Transportation Office at 494-2950.