Riding a Benton School District Bus is a privilege. The purpose of the Transportation Department of the Benton School District is to provide the safest, most time and cost efficient transportation possible for those students who are to be transported between their homes and schools. This process is the responsibility of the entire community and requires the cooperation of all students, parents/ guardians, school personnel and citizens who drive on the streets in the presence of the school buses.
Students and parents/ guardians are expected to read these regulations carefully. They must be followed if we are to provide safe, efficient transportation for the students of our District.
Must ride the same bus each day, so that the driver can keep up with him/her, unless an unforeseen circumstance occurs that would not allow him/her to catch the correct bus. Transfer students must sit where the driver assigns them to sit. Transfer students are subject to the same rules, regulations, and consequences as regular bus riders.
Arrival at the Bus Stop
- Be at the bus stop 10 minutes before the bus is scheduled to arrive. Do not arrive earlier than 10 minutes. Be on the proper side of the road while you wait, even if you must cross the street to enter the bus
- Before crossing a street to enter the bus, wait until the bus has come to a complete stop and the driver has given you directions. Respect the property rights of others while waiting for the bus. Do not litter or make unnecessary noise. Do not gather under carports, porches, or on lawns without owner’s permission.
- Stand back at least 10 feet from the bus stop, and do not approach the bus until it has come to a complete stop and the door is opened. If you miss the bus, do not attempt to ride another bus.
Getting On and Off The Bus
- Enter and leave the bus quickly and in an orderly manner. Do not enter or leave the school bus by the back door except in the case of an emergency or unless directed to do so by the driver.
- If you must cross the street after leaving the bus in the afternoon, go to a point on the shoulder of the street 10 feet in front of the bus and wait until driver has signaled you to cross.
- If you drop any object while leaving the bus, do not attempt to retrieve the object until the bus has left the scene and the street is clear of other vehicles.
Riding the School Bus
In order to maintain a safe and orderly atmosphere on all Benton Public School buses, the following rules have been established and must be followed to retain bus privileges.
- Follow the directions of the driver. Students are under the direct supervision of the driver while on the bus.
- Do not distract the driver’s attention or disturb other riders on the bus.
- Remain properly seated at all times. Follow the directions of the driver as to when it is appropriate to standing on the bus.
- Keep hands, feet, all body parts, and objects to yourself.
- Do not use profanity, rude language, rude gestures, or tease/bully anyone on the bus.
- Do not litter, write on, or damage the bus in any way. A $50 fine will be enforced for damage to seats and $185 for any damaged window.
- Knives, firearms, sharp objects, clubs or animals are never allowed on a school bus.
- Large items will be permitted only if it fits in the student’s lap or in undercarriage if available (Instruments, athletic gear, etc.). Students must not block the aisle with any books, musical instruments, athletic gear, legs, or feet.
- All school handbook rules are to be followed.
- Ride only the bus to which you assigned. The Benton Public Schools do not permit visitors on our buses.
- All students who live within two (2) miles radius of school will not have established Stops. Transfer buses are available at your nearest Elementary School.
- Students are not permitted to sit on the front engine cowling or the dash board. Students will not tamper with any of the safety devices on the buses. Do not throw anything inside or outside the buswindow. Any student caught throwing items out the window and damaging a vehicle will be responsible for the cost of repairs.
- Students who refuse to properly identify themselves to the driver or an administrator upon request shall be suspended from riding the bus.
CONSEQUENCES FOR VIOLATIONS OF BUS RULES
Students who violate bus rules will be subject but not limited to the following consequences.
- 1st Bus discipline report – Verbal warning
- 2nd Bus discipline report - Parent Called
- 3rd Bus discipline report - 3 day bus suspension
- 4th Bus discipline report - 5 day bus suspension
- 5th Bus discipline - 10 day bus suspension
- 6th Bus Discipline - Bus privileges denied for remainder of the school year.
- Severe Clause: A student who distracts a bus driver from his/her responsibility of safely driving the bus or who engages in conduct endangering other students such as but not limited to fighting, smoking, or disrespect toward the bus driver will receive an immediate suspension from riding. The consequence will be the decision of the Transportation Director and/or School Administration. Any infraction is subject to School based consequences. Suspension time for a severe infraction may result in the denial of bus riding privileges for the remainder of the year.
*A suspension from one Benton School District bus is a suspension from all buses operated by the Benton School District.
*If a student rides the bus under suspension then the discipline automatically moves to the next progression of bus discipline.
Please contact the Director of Transportation with questions/concerns regarding bus discipline issues. The number for the Transportation Department is 501-776-5706.
In an emergency, students should remain calm and quiet and listen for instructions from the bus driver. If the driver is unable to conduct emergency measures, the students should follow the procedures below in leaving the bus:
- If the exit is through the front door, students sitting in the front seat to the left of the aisle will move out first, followed by those in the right front seat and proceeding in this alternating manner until all seats are emptied. If the exit is through the rear emergency door, those students sitting next to the aisle will leave first, beginning with those students in the rear of the bus.
- If a rapid exit is necessary and it is possible to exit from both doors, students in the rear half of the bus should move out the back door, and those in the front half should move out the front door. In the event of an accident resulting in injury, persons injured should, if possible, be moved only under competent medical supervision.
- If the bus should be overturned, students should evacuate through windows or through either door. Upon leaving the bus in an emergency, students are to move immediately off the roadway to a safe distance from traffic. They should not cross the road unless instructed by the driver.
- In the event of a tornado or other natural disaster, students should follow the instruction of the bus driver regarding emergency procedures.
Parents are an important part of their child’s success at school. A positive experience on the school bus can enhance a child’s potential. Parents are expected to assist through completing the following each school day:
- Instruct their child to be 5-10 minutes, no earlier, to the bus stop. Review all transportation expectations and conduct or model those expectations with their child so that they know what each expectation looks like.
- Determine procedure for child between home and the bus stop. Encourage appropriate dress for protection against inclement weather.
- Be courteous to the school bus driver. They are the professionals and have extended a lot of time, effort and personal finances to be entrusted as a school bus driver.
- Establish a schedule with neighbors to monitor student safety. Monitor the bus stop area for damage and cleanliness.
- Report to police any unusual vehicles near a bus stop or suspicious individuals who are not routinely at the bus stop. Instruct your child to never accept a ride with a motorist.
- Contact the school or Transportation Department if your child is late or cannot be located following the school bus arrival.
- Please provide the bus driver with written parental and principal permission, one day prior to visiting student is to ride home with your child.
- Protocol for addressing concerns with the bus driver or other transportation concerns are as follows:
- 1)Call The Director of Transportation at 501-776-5706.
- 2)Director of Transportation will discuss the issue with the proper personnel.
- 3)Principal of student’s school will be contacted if needed.
- 4)Superintendent of Benton Schools will be contacted if needed.