The majority of people assume that a school bus driver’s sole responsibility is to safely transport children to and from school. While this is the driver’s primary responsibility, other responsibilities are frequently included. The exact scope of those tasks will vary depending on the school district, but they will almost always include record keeping, inspection, and some general bus maintenance.
To work as a school bus driver, you must have more than just a valid driver’s license. Background checks are common in most school districts, with issues like various legal infractions or even a poor credit history excluding some candidates. In many school districts, a clean driving record is required. Driver training for large vehicles is also required before working as a school bus driver in any jurisdiction. Additionally, some districts hold training sessions to help successful candidates learn how to deal with unruly students and other common issues that may arise.
A school bus driver is responsible for a variety of records in addition to transporting students. Some of these have to do with the vehicle’s mileage. The driver may be in charge of taking odometer readings at various points throughout the day. This could include recording the reading when delivering the students to school and returning the vehicle to school property after transporting the students home. If the bus route includes stops at several schools within the district, the driver is frequently responsible for keeping track of mileage at each stop.
A school bus driver is responsible for accurately reporting any disturbances or violations of school regulations that occur during the transportation of students to and from school, just as a teacher is responsible for maintaining records of disciplinary issues. These documents are delivered to the designated school officer, such as the principal or vice principal. A description of the disturbance, the names of the participants, and any actions taken the bus driver to restore order to the bus will be included in the records.
A school bus driver performs routine checks of some of the bus’s basic features and equipment in many school districts. For instance, the driver may check the condition of the tires for signs of wear or test the heating and cooling system to ensure it is working properly on a regular basis. The school bus driver also notes any elements that need to be repaired or inspected a mechanic, and reports them to the appropriate school authority.
Because a school bus driver’s primary concern is the safety of the students, some jurisdictions require the driver to escort smaller children across roads and streets. The typical bus driver will also be trained in basic first aid and how to use the onboard communications system to summon medical help if a child becomes seriously ill or injured while on the bus. While a driver is not expected to have the same level of expertise as an EMT, he or she is expected to be capable of handling minor situations and reporting the incident and treatment to the school nurse when they arrive at school.