Panhandle Transportation Guidelines
Procedures for Waiting on the Bus
- Maintain the bus route schedule; students must be at their bus stop a minimum of 5 minutes before scheduled pick-up time. The driver will not wait.
- To ensure safety, students need to stand on the sidewalk or back from the roadway while waiting for the bus. The District Code of Conduct is in effect as students wait and inappropriate behavior will be addressed.
- When the bus approaches, students need to form a single file line and prepare to load the bus.
- Students need to stand clear of the bus until it comes to a complete stop.
Loading the Bus
- Students do not need to engage in inappropriate physical contact like pushing another student.
- Use of handrail while climbing the steps is the best safety practice.
- Students at the first stops may be assigned seats in the back of the bus. All seats will be filled accordingly with students at the last stops in the front seats. Students may be assigned a seat on the bus at any time.
- Students need to quickly find a seat. The bus cannot move until all students are seated.
Conduct on the Bus
- Students need to remain seated while the bus is in motion.
- Students should not change seats, unless directed to do so by the driver.
- A student will bot refuse to sit in assigned seat or deny another student a place to sit.
- Objects will be kept out of the aisle at all times. Feet and legs should be kept out of the aisle when students are loading or unloading.
- Students may talk quietly. Load noises may distract the driver and create an unsafe condition. In severe conditions, the driver may implement no talking during the route and Transportation or Campus can be called for assistance.
- Scuffling, horseplay, fighting, and the use of obscene, vulgar, or profane language and gestures are strictly prohibited.
- Objects will not be thrown inside or outside the bus.
- Students will not mark, cut, or scratch any part of the bus. The person responsible for vandalism to a bus will be required to reimburse the District for repair costs.
- The emergency door and exit controls shall be used only during supervised drills or actual emergencies or when directed to do so by the driver.
- All students must wear seat belts, when the bus or vehicle is so equipped.
Getting Off the Bus
- Students need to stay seated until the bus comes to a complete stop.
- Student should wait their turn to leave the bus; pushing and crowding will only slow existing and may cause injury.
- Students must have written permission signed by campus principal, designee or approval of the Transportation Department to get off at a bus stop other than the assigned stop. The written permission must be given to the driver when boarding the bus at the campus.
- Students need to stay clear of bus and must not chase or hang on to the bus at any time.
- If any articles are dropped or roll under the bus, Do Not Go After It. The students should go to the door of the bus and ask the driver for help.
Crossing the Street or Highway
- All student living on the left side of the street shall exit the bus and move to a point 10 to 12 feet in front of the bus. The student should be able to see the driver and the driver see them. Once in place and when safe, the driver will signal the student to begin to cross the street. The student should then walk to the left side of the bus and ensure that all traffic has stopped before continuing to cross the street.
- Students need to check in both directions and walk directly across the road.
- Never cross the road behind the bus.
- Students must cross all streets at intersections and obey all traffic laws and signs on their way home.
- Tobacco, tobacco products or e-cigarettes
- Alcoholic Beverages
- Illegal Prescription Drugs
- Weapons, Laser pointers, explosive devices, harmful chemicals (pepper spray or other aerosol sprays)
- Harsh aromatic type substances, which include cologne/perfume, hair spray, or nail polish
- Live animals or insects
- Glass containers
- Matchers or cigarette lighters
- The use of MP3 players, I-pods, radios, or cd players is only allowed with the use of ear-buds or headsets. Should the use of these items become a distraction to the driver, especially while driving, the devices may be taken up and a discipline report issued and sent to the principal.
- Anything that is prohibited in student code of conduct
- Follow the bus driver’s instructions.
- If you must leave the bus, stay with the group at all times.
- The following procedures will be used for evacuation in an emergency
- The student nearest the emergency door will open the door and hold it open
- Evacuation will start with the seat closest to the door and alternative sides (left then right)
- Students leave the bus in a single file, as quickly and quietly as possible.
- Once outside the bus, students follow the driver’s instructions completely.
The Transportation Director will see that all drivers practice one emergency evacuations during the school year.
- The Bus Rider Rules and District Code of Conduct applies to all school-sponsored events.
- Student management will be the responsibility of the trip sponsor, campus principal or bus driver, if needed.
- The bus must return in the same condition of cleanliness as when it was received.
Violations of Safety Procedures
Consequences for violation of safety procedures on the school bus are listed. Video surveillance may be used on all buses. Bus safety infractions found during routine viewing of these videos will be treated the same as if the driver had seen the infraction.
Riding a school bus is a privilege provided by the school district and should be treated as such. The transportation handbook and student code of conduct will apply to all students while riding a school bus to and from school on a regular school day or while on co/curricular activities.
First Incident: A verbal warning or bus safety report will be issued at the discretion of the driver. The bus driver may explain the bus safety rules to the student and the need to abide by these rules to insure the safety of all students. If a bus safety report is issued, the principal or designee will handle the bus safety report at their discretion
Second Incident: A bus safety report is issued; the principal or designee will handle the bus safety report at their discretion. Which may include bus discipline, campus discipline, parent call, or written documentation to the student’s parent or guardian informing them of the incident. The principal may request a conference with the bus driver and student. The student’s bus riding privileges may be revoked.
Third or Subsequent Incidents: A bus report is issued, the principal or designee, will handle the bus safety report at their discretion, which may include bus discipline, campus discipline, parent call, or written documentation to the student’s parent or guardian informing them of the incident. The principal may request a conference with the bus driver and student. The student’s bus riding privileges may be revoked
Severe Incident: Destruction of property, fighting, or other major infractions will result in a bus safety report to the principal to be handled accordingly.
The Panhandle Independent School District will use one of the following means to notify parents of school closures or delays due to inclement weather.
Panhandle ISD website: http://www.panhandleisd.net
Amarillo TV Stations Channels 4, 7, and 10