Bus Rules and Student Expectations:
- On Time – Drivers have a time schedule to operate on and students must be at the proper location for boarding the bus at school and at their home. Running to the bus presents a danger which should be avoided. Some students are required to have a responsible adult visible in order to depart the bus.
- Waiting – All pupils must stay clear of traffic lanes while waiting at designated bus stops. Running, fighting , horseplay or shoving will not be allowed.
- Behaviors – Each student who rides a school bus is expected to demonstrate a courteous and cooperative attitude to all school staff. Students are not allowed to use tobacco products while on the bus. Eating and drinking are also prohibited. Drinks may be provided to students during extreme heat conditions.
- Safety – Students must maintain reasonable order so the driver may be alerted to all traffic hazards, signals or emergency vehicles. No objects may be stored in the aisle way. No balloons or glass containers are permitted on the bus. Any carry on items must fit inside the student’s lap during the ride. Large class projects or items for demonstration in class must be arranged with the driver in advance in order to bring onto the bus.
- Railroad Crossing – Students must reduce the noise level and remain silent in order to assist the driver in listening and looking at all railroad crossings.
- Proper Destination – Students may only board and unload at their proper destinations. In order for students to load or unload anywhere other than the designated location, a dated note signed by the parent and a building administrator must be presented to the driver.
- Keep Inside – Keep head, hands, and arms inside the bus window at all times. No passing or throwing of any items outside of a bus window is allowed.
- Stay Clear – Students should avoid playing on or around a school bus.
- Boarding and Exiting of a Bus – If students are to cross the road either getting on the bus or exiting the bus; they shall cross approximately (12) feet in front of the bus or at a location in which the drivers face can be clearly seen through the bus windshield. Students are to cross the road only after a signal from the driver is given and a check that traffic has stopped in all directions.
- Remain Seated – All students must remain seated while the bus is in motion. Feet must stay clear of the aisle to avoid tripping others.
- Eligibility – A student may lose the privilege of riding a bus if behavior reaches a point such as to cause disruptions and distractions on the bus.
- Responsibility – It is the responsibility of the student and their parents to maintain eligibility to ride the bus.
- Dress Code – Student dress will be regulated according to the dress code of the school the student is attending. No spraying or perfume, hair spray or other body smells is allowed due to possible health issues with other students.
- Pay for damages – Students who are known to inflict damages to the bus will pay the cost of repairs. This may be part of the principal’s disciplinary action.
- Punishment – The principal of the school which the student attends is in charge of student behavior on the bus just as in the classroom. Drivers will investigate and report to the principal who is in charge of discipline. Students will receive appropriate punishments for violations. This punishment may include bus suspension as well as out of school suspension. Bus suspension includes all buses. Drivers may assign seats to any and/or all students. Girls and Boys seating will be separated.
Bus Conduct and Levels of Misbehavior
The school bus is an extension of the classroom and school activities; therefore, students shall conduct themselves on the bus in a manner consistent with the established standards for safety and classroom behavior. Students are under the supervision and control of the bus driver while on the bus. All reasonable direction given by the driver will be followed.
The following levels of conduct and misbehavior are to serve as a guide for consistent reporting and discipline. They are not exhaustive and should be applied according to each referral and action of a student.
Level I – Occur infrequently and only on occasion. These infractions will be addressed by the driver. Level I bus behaviors may include, but not limited to, pushing, cutting line, horseplay, failure to sit in the appropriate seat, fussing, talking loudly, yelling from windows, lying, use of inappropriate language, inappropriate movement in a seat or annoying other students.
Appropriate Level I consequences: verbal reprimand, short term assignment to front seat, phone call to parents, removing privileges such as talking with friends, seat selection, playing with toys or listening to music.
Level II – These behaviors include but not limited to, Level I behaviors that are persistent and repeated multiple times , throwing objects from the window while bus is moving, hanging head , arms, or objects out the window while bus is moving, obscene language or gestures, repeated moving around the bus while in motion, disrespect to driver or school staff.
Appropriate Level II consequences: Referral to Principal for discipline, which may include documentation from previous level I violations. Other actions may include suspension from school sponsored activates, corporal punishment, in School Suspension, out of school suspension, bus suspension.
Level III – These behaviors include but are not limited to, intentional tripping students on the bus, causing emotional outburst of other students, simple fighting, opening the emergency doors or other exits without permission, possession or use of tobacco products, tearing or cutting of seats, defacing or damaging bus seats or walls, destroying other students property, threats and harassment of other students.
Appropriate Level III consequences: Referral of Principal for discipline, actions may include suspension from school sponsored activates, corporal punishment, in School Suspension, out of school suspension, bus suspension, restitution for lost, damaged or stolen property.
Level IV – These behaviors are acts which result in violence to another person or property or which pose a threat to the safety of others or are so serious that they require immediate removal from the bus, the intervention of law enforcement officers, or actions of a Disciplinary Hearing Authority. These behaviors may include but not limited to unmodified Level I, Level II or Level III behaviors; vandalism in excess of $100, theft/possession/sale of stolen property in excess of $200, arson, extortion, bomb threats, false alarms or reports, fights (major, causing injury), consensual sexual contact.
Appropriate Level IV consequences: All Level IV behaviors must be reported to building principals as soon as reasonably possible. The minimum disciplinary action by the school administration will be suspension to the Disciplinary Hearing Authority (DHA). The DHA may impose additional suspension from the bus or from school, assign the student to an alternative program, recommend expulsion to the Board of Education or impose such terms and conditions as it deems reasonable.
Level V – These behaviors involve Zero-Tolerance Acts which may be defined in Dickson County Board of Education Policy 6.309. All violations of the Zero-Tolerance Policy will result in immediate suspension for school and school activities pending a hearing before the Disciplinary Hearing Authority.