BUS DRIVER QUALIFICATIONS & TRAINING
Only employees who have the appropriate license for the vehicle operated and who have complied with the regulations of the Commissioners of Motor Vehicles, Transportation and Education may drive pupils to and from home on regularly scheduled routes. No other person may operate a school bus on a scheduled route for the purpose of transporting pupils to and from home.
To ensure the adequate and effective training of bus drivers, no person shall be allowed to operate a school bus without first receiving all of his/her training under the direct supervision of a Department-approved school bus driving instructor. While a trainee engages in pre-service training, which takes place prior to a driver transporting children, no direct supervision is mandated; however all training must be approved by a State Education Department-approved instructor.
None other than the above-mentioned persons may drive a school owned vehicle having a pupil capacity greater than 15 passengers. School vehicles having capacities of fewer than 15 passengers may be driven by employees hired as bus drivers as well as State Education Department-certified members of the instructional staff. The latter, however, may not drive on regularly scheduled routes. State Education Department certified staff members transporting students in school-owned vehicles must also comply with requirements of the Commissioners of Motor Vehicles, Transportation and Education.
By April 1, 1992 or upon the expiration date of their current license if it comes earlier, all school bus drivers must acquire the appropriate Commercial Drivers License pursuant to New York State law. Volunteer bus drivers (who operate a bus designed to carry 14 or fewer passengers and drive less than 30 days per year) are exempt from this (CDL) requirement. Such drivers may not drive regularly scheduled routes.
Upon completion of the established training procedures, the school districts shall verify compliance with the direct supervision requirement through the use of their recordkeeping systems. Prior to June 30, 1991, should the district need to delay implementation of the direct supervisory training requirement, the New York State Education Department shall review the district's request. To accommodate a district which has submitted a justified request, the Education Department may grant a one year hardship period to any district.
The Board also recognizes the importance of the contact time and relationships between bus drivers and students. In regard to this, opportunities for in-service programs for staff concerning child abuse and neglecting danger signs will be extended to include the bus driving staff.
Ref: Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act (CMVSA), 1986
Education Law §3624
Vehicle and Traffic Law, Article 19-A
8 NYCRR §156.3, as amended
15 NYCRR Part 3
Adoption date: January 1, 1993