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Gwinnett County Public School

School Bus Safety Guidelines and Procedures

Student Behavior Management Plan

GCPS provides bus safety education for students on how to keep themselves safe in and around the school bus. The Student Behavior Management Plan is a three-part program that helps the bus driver achieve appropriate student behavior on the school bus. The following information outlines the plan’s three components— prevention, intervention, and consequences.

Prevention

     Prevention steps are used by the bus driver to educate the student about safe and appropriate riding behaviors, to clarify the bus driver’s expectations for the students, and to assist students in successfully demonstrating safe riding habits every day. The bus driver will communicate and reinforce those expectations which are based on the School Bus Safety Guidelines. These guidelines are posted on all school buses.

     Assigned seating provides structure and a consistent routine while aiding in student behavior. All students are assigned seats at the beginning of the school year.

     Age-appropriate school bus safety education programs are included in the Health and Physical Education curriculum at the elementary and middle school levels. GCPS school bus drivers conduct simulated emergency evacuation drills with all grade levels on a monthly basis. Students in grades K–5 perform an actual emergency evacuation drill annually.

Intervention

Intervention steps are used by the bus driver to correct unsafe or inappropriate behaviors. The level of intervention will depend on the severity of the misconduct.

  • Verbal reminder— The bus driver will remind the student of the rule(s) not being followed.
  • Talk individually to the student— The bus driver will discuss the unsafe/inappropriate behavior with the
  • Reassign bus seat— The student’s seat will be reassigned to allow the driver to better monitor the student.
  • Communication with parent/guardian:
    • Courtesy call to parent/guardian— A phone call to the parent is made by the bus driver, making them aware of the unsafe or inappropriate conduct, or
    • Parent Notification Form— The bus driver sends written notification of the student’s inappropriate or unsafe behavior to the parent/guardian for signature.

 

Consequences

When prevention and intervention steps are unsuccessful in improving the student’s behavior, a Bus Discipline Form is completed and submitted by the bus driver to the school administrator. The administrator is then responsible for issuing appropriate consequences for the student. Serious offenses may lead to suspension from the bus or from school.

Safety Procedures

The following School Bus Safety Procedures are posted on all GCPS school buses:

  • Students will follow directions of the bus driver.
  • Students must be at their assigned bus stop five minutes before the scheduled bus arrival time, waiting in a safe place, clear of traffic, and 12 feet from where the bus stops.
  • Students will wait in an orderly line and avoid playing.
  • Students will cross the roadway in front of the bus after the bus has stopped, they have looked at the bus driver for a hand signal, and they have looked in both directions for traffic— left, right, left.
  • Students will signal the bus driver with a waving motion if something is dropped and wait for the bus driver to give a signal before picking up object.
  • Students will go directly to assigned seat when entering the bus and keep the aisles and exits clear.
  • Students will remain properly seated, back against the back of the seat, bottom against the bottom of the seat, and keep hands to themselves.
  • Students will not eat, drink, chew gum, or bring tobacco, alcohol, drugs, or any controlled substances on the bus.
  • Students will not carry animals, glass objects, nuisance items, hazardous materials, or weapons onto the bus. Students may carry only objects that can be held in their laps.
  • Students will refrain from using loud voices, profanity, and/or obscene gestures, and respect the rights and safety of others.
  • Students will keep head, arms, and objects inside the bus at all times.
  • Students will be totally silent at railroad crossings.
  • Students will stay seated until time to get off the bus. The open door is the signal to get up from the bus seat.
  • Students are expected to ride the bus to which they have been assigned and to get off at their assigned bus stop. Only in the event of an emergency, as determined by the principal or their representative, will a student be allowed to ride a different bus. Notification of this emergency must be sent to the school in a written note signed by the parent/guardian. The school administrator may provide a Bus Pass granting permission.
  • Students will keep their bus clean and in good, safe condition.
  • Students are allowed to “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD), but shall be prohibited from using such device during the operation of a school bus in a manner that interferes with the communication equipment or the bus driver’s operation of the school bus. The bus driver may allow wearing of headphones with an audio system on a case-by-case basis as long as it is in accordance with local school rules.
  • Students shall be prohibited from using mirrors, lasers, flash cameras, or any other lights or reflective devices in a manner that might interfere with the school bus driver’s operation of the school bus.