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The Road to Learning Transportation 101

The Road to Learning Transportation 101. CASBO November 7, 2013 Shawn Higginbotham, Associate Superintendent Lake Hamilton School District. Topics. Legal Basis and Authority Drivers Safety Preparedness Equipment Inspections and Maintenance State Reporting. Do school buses matter?.

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The Road to Learning Transportation 101

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  1. The Road to LearningTransportation 101 CASBO November 7, 2013 Shawn Higginbotham, Associate Superintendent Lake Hamilton School District

  2. Topics • Legal Basis and Authority • Drivers • Safety • Preparedness • Equipment • Inspections and Maintenance • State Reporting

  3. Do school buses matter? • Safety • Traffic • Environment • Reliability • Free access to education

  4. Evolution of School Transportation

  5. Quick Facts In Arkansas: • Approximately 5,000 route buses • 325,000 student passengers • 243,000 route miles per day • 43,200,000 miles per year • 2 fatalities since 2001 • 922 square miles in largest school district • 22 square miles in smallest

  6. 2011-12 Student Transportation Data • Statewide expenditures: $196,344,334 • 4.8% of net total expenditures • Range per pupil spending: $115 to $1,123 • Avg. per pupil spending: $450.59 • Avg. cost per mile: $3.86 • $1.64 for driver costs • $2.22 to operate and maintain Compiled from the Annual Statistical Report

  7. Funding Included in the per pupil funding model (matrix) • Fiscal Year 14 $315.50 ($6,393) • Fiscal Year 15 $321.20 ($6,521) Supplemental Transportation Funding 2011-12

  8. Is public school pupil transportation… • Required? • Necessary? • Effective? • Efficient? • Expected? • Part of an “adequate” education? • Aheadache?!!

  9. Legal Basis Are public schools in Arkansas required to provide transportation for students to and from school?

  10. Authority • 6-19-101 authorizes the State Board to set standards to “provide a safe, efficient, and economical system of pupil transportation.” • 6-19-102 gives local boards of directors authority to purchase buses and hire drivers, “affording safe and convenient transportation to the pupils…” • Not be required but EXPECTED

  11. Main State Governing Agency Division of Public School Academic Facilities and Transportation

  12. Policy Requirements • School Districts must have written policies for: • Transportation eligibility • Student behavior while being transported • Emergency procedures while being transported

  13. School Bus Drivers

  14. Driver Qualifications • 6-19-106 • May not be “physically defective or of unsound mind, known to be a habitual drunkard or of immoral habits” • Cannot have “general reputation of being a fast and reckless operator of motor vehicles without regard to the rights of others”

  15. Other Driver Requirements • 6-19-107 submit to driving record checks • 6-19-108 pass exams required by DPSAFT and ASP • Written/oral tests • Road test • Includes physical exam by licensed physician • Pre-service behind-the-wheel training

  16. Driver Licensure • Class B CDL (generally) • Endorsements required • “S” School Bus • “P” Passenger • Air Brakes • Driver records checked twice annually • District maintains records

  17. Physical Exams Required • Condition of employment • Includes pre-employment and random drug and alcohol screens • Negative tuberculosis skin test • Physical documented every two years • Restricted access to physical results – supervisors and managers

  18. Physical Exam Details • Vision – 20/40; field of vision; color blind • Hearing – perceive forced whisper ≥ 5 ft. • Cardiovascular disease – interfere with driving • Lung abnormalities – interfere with driving • Blood pressure – outside normal limits • Epilepsy/seizures – none allowed

  19. Physicals (cont’d) • Amputation – must be granted a Skills Performance Evaluation Certificate • Alcoholism – diagnosed not allowed • Drug Use – not allowed • Diabetes – if insulin dependent, not allowed

  20. Driver Training • Local driver training program required • Minimum of 24 hours of pre-service training • DPSAFT will provide three hours training annually • DPSAFT will issue certification of completion

  21. Why drive a school bus?

  22. Survey Results

  23. Driver Survey Continued What would make your job more satisfying? • Better pay/benefits (46.4%) • More training • More career development • More hands-on support from supervisor • More feedback/recognition

  24. Bus Driver’s Education

  25. Drivers’ Benefits • Insurance eligibility (6-17-1116) • Defines full time status – 720 hours during the school year (178 days = 4.05 hours per day) • Provides for bus driver eligibility to participate in group health insurance – employee pays full premium • District may opt to pay match • Paid sick leave eligibility (6-17-1301) • Works “not less than 20 hours per week” • One day per month or major portion thereof

  26. Driver Records • Bus driver files should include: • Current CDL • Physical examination • Proof of state & federal background check (after 4/10/1997) • Central registry check (after 7/1/09) • Semi-annual driving records check • TB test results • Proof of pre-employment drug and alcohol testing(after 12/31/1995) • Any random drug testing

  27. Driver Recruitment • Parents (usually mom) • Grandparents • Law Enforcement Officers • Ministers/Pastors • Self-employed (farmers, barbers, etc.) • Retirees (bored or broke) • Non-insured ??

  28. Driver Retention • Banquet • Awards • Jackets/Shirts • Benefits • Trips • Simple Appreciation: “Thank You” • Support from Administrators, Parents • Equipment Improvement

  29. Substitute Drivers • Important to provide • training • route description sheet • information about students with special needs • support and TLC • morning departure time • special mechanical quirks • Must meet all CDL requirements

  30. Safety

  31. “American students are nearly eight times safer riding in a school bus than with their own parents and guardians in cars.” Fatality rates per 100 million miles traveled: School buses .02 fatalities Cars 1.5 fatalities National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

  32. Loading/Unloading Safety • 27-51-1004 prohibits passing school bus with lights activated for loading/unloading • 6-19-110 and 27-51-1003 define loading/unloading points and procedures • 6-19-110 requires bus drivers to report violations and prosecutors to report to superintendents

  33. Loading Danger Zone

  34. Driver Responsibilities • 27-51-1002 requires drivers to conduct pre-trip inspections • 6-19-102 requires drivers to use seat belt

  35. No Firearms • 5-73-119 prohibits possession of firearm on school property specifically including school buses and “at a designated stop identified on the route list published…” • Defense to prosecution under this section if “the person is a minor engaged in lawful marksmanship competition or practice under the supervision of his or her parent…”

  36. Prohibited Entry • 5-39-214 prohibits unauthorized entry of a school bus and requires signage • A person over 18 may not • Enter the bus with criminal intent • Disregard the instruction of the driver • Enter and refuse to leave • Causes or attempts to cause disruption or annoyance • Engages in reckless conduct that causes a substantial risk of creating apprehension in any person on the bus

  37. Cell Phones Prohibited • 6-19-120 prohibits driver use of cell phone while operating bus except in emergency or breakdown

  38. Penalties for Drug Activity • 5-64-411 enhances penalties for drug activity if committed within 1000 feet of • Public or private school property, including buses • Designated bus stop as identified on the route list published… • Exempts bus stops from posting requirement

  39. Passengers Must Be Seated • 6-19-119 • Driver may not operate until every passenger is seated • Accountability is assigned to superintendent • Imposes fines for knowingly violating

  40. Anti-Bullying • 6-18-514 • “…shall adopt policies to prevent pupil harassment known as bullying…” • “…on school buses, at designated stops…” • Requires anti-bullying notices to be posted on buses

  41. Seatbelts • Passengers are protected “like eggs in a carton.” • All a child must do to be protected is to sit down in a seat. • Even without seatbelts school buses are still the safest way transport students.

  42. Speeding • Buses must observe speed limits for other traffic except when commercial vehicle limit is posted differently. • Example: Speed limit on an interstate is posted as 75 and 65 for trucks. School buses must observe the 65 mph limit.

  43. Being Prepared

  44. Evacuation Drills

  45. Tornado Procedure • Use the best available procedure for your part of the state • Consult administrators and others

  46. Accident Kit The kit should contain: • Clipboard, ink pens • Blank seating charts • Camera • Laminated business cards with phone/fax numbers and addresses • 100 foot tape measure, • Insurance info • Phone numbers • Drug and alcohol testing • Wrecker services • Area hospital(s) • Drivers’ emergency contacts • Umbrella

  47. Accident Action Plan • Designate employees for these responsibilities: • Media spokesperson • District spokesperson at hospital • Accident kit to scene • Interview driver and witnesses • Arrange for drug and alcohol test • Notify schools and school board of accident

  48. Accident Action Plan (cont’d) • Notify driver’s family/spouse • Notify insurance company • Take and log phone calls • Operate the radio • Dispatch requested equipment and personnel • Procedure to release students to parents • Post-accident parent notification • Official statement

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