Bus Safety is Major Priority for District
Safety is a major priority in the Olathe Public Schools. The bus ride is an extension of the school day and students are under the supervision of school and bus personnel. For this purpose, video surveillance systems are placed on buses to monitor driver safety standards and student behavior.
As another safety precaution, the Olathe Public Schools and First Student, Inc. urge parents to inspect their children’s clothing and eliminate the potential hazards associated with drawstrings on jackets, sweatshirts and other clothing. Information campaigns by the National Safety Council, the U.S. Department of Transportation and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission have caused many clothing manufacturers to eliminate drawstrings from their clothing.
Clothing drawstrings can become snagged on school bus handrails or doors, on playground equipment, on escalators and other mechanical equipment. Incidents of snagged drawstrings or toggles have resulted in injuries and, occasionally, death. The simplest solution is to remove all drawstrings from children’s clothing.
In addition to general safety practices, there are various state and district regulations which students must follow when riding the bus.
The following statements are from the “Laws and Regulations Governing School Pupil Transportation in Kansas” and apply to all bus riders.
- The driver is in charge of all passengers for loading onto, riding in, or unloading from the vehicle. Teachers or other sponsors may be asked to assist with discipline issues. It is the driver’s ultimate responsibility to ensure safe transportation for all passengers.
- The driver cannot require a passenger to leave the vehicle prior to arrival at the destination point.
- The driver has authority to establish an assigned seating arrangement or to assign seats individually.
- Passengers awaiting transportation should stand at least 10 feet back from the traveled portion of the roadway.
- Tobacco products, intoxicating liquor or other alcohol products, or illegal drugs may not be transported or consumed in any vehicle being used for school transportation.
- There should be no animals, except service animals, transported in a school bus.
- Passengers should keep all body parts inside the vehicle at all times (i.e., no hands, feet, heads, etc., extended from windows or doors).
- All passengers should remain seated while the vehicles are moving.
- No weapons of any type may be transported in these vehicles, except those in use by a law enforcement officer in performance of official duties.
In addition to state regulations, the Olathe Public Schools’ Code of Conduct applies at all times while students are riding on district-provided transportation. Additionally, the following rules and regulations ensure student safety:
- All students should arrive at their bus stops in the morning five minutes before their scheduled bus stop time.
- Obedience to the directions of the bus driver.
- No obscene language or gestures.
- No smoking, including e-cigarettes.
- No throwing materials from bus windows.
- No vandalism to property.
- No excessive talking and unnecessary noises.
- No fighting.
- No skateboards.
- Students must remain seated while bus is moving.
- Students must not extend their hands, arms or head from bus windows.
- Students must adhere to safety regulations and other rules and regulations as posed by the contract carrier.
- Instruments that will fit in a student’s lap or between their legs may be transported on the bus. Space may not be available for larger instruments.
- No food, gum, candy, or any drink other than water in a clear bottle.
- A registered student may bring a guest ride-along if both parents provide written permission, which is also signed by a school official, and presented to their bus driver upon boarding the bus. Guests are limited to an occasional basis provided that adequate seating is available.
Bus Safety Expectations
- Follow all of the driver's instructions
- Pay attention to your surroundings to stay safe.
- Be respectful of others.
- Stay seated until your stop
- Tell the driver if you are bullied. If you see something, say something
Failing to comply with the established safety regulations may lead to a suspension of bus privileges. For more information, contact the district Transportation Office at 913-780-7047.