South Carolina District Gets Tough on School Bus Riders
published on April 21, 2017 by Sonia Mastros
A Policy Overhaul
Keeping students safe from accidents and violent behavior in the classroom is naturally a top priority for school districts across the country. Student safety is just as important during the trip to and from school, where small distractions can lead to devastating consequences. As Beaufort County School District prepares for its first year of managing its own school bus fleet, they’ve incorporated stricter consequences for students who don’t follow the rules.
The district’s three-strikes approach to discipline for school bus riders is drawing attention. In the past, riders could be suspended for just 10 consecutive days, returning to the bus as soon as their suspension was over. New regulations, set forth by Superintendent Jeff Moss, mandate that students who commit 3 major violations on the bus can be suspended for the remainder of the school year.
The Case for Change
According to district leadership, around six percent of all disciplinary infractions occurred on school buses last year. Inconsistent enforcement of the rules and lack of training are cited as potential causes. The district will now be operating its transportation department in-house, providing additional training and resources for drivers.
Offenses that are considered to be Level I, or minor offenses, will still come with a single bus suspension. Levels II-IV are considered more significant and will count toward the three-strike system. Certain major offenses, such as possession of a weapon, will result in loss of bus privileges for the remainder of the school year.
Keeping Students Safe
Transportation professionals will likely pay close attention to the changes made at the Beaufort County School District and how they impact student safety statistics as the school year progresses. Transportation departments across the country are searching for solutions that protect students from dangers on the bus and ease the minds of parents, teachers, and administrators. The incorporation of technological solutions, along with enhanced policies is transforming the way that school districts manage their transportation departments.
To learn more about the school bus safety tools available for your district, contact the team of transportation specialists at BusBoss. We’d be glad to discuss the wide range of solutions that we have available.
How strict are your school district’s policies regarding school bus behavior? How do you think this has helped or hurt school bus safety? We’d love to hear from you.