Bus Passes and Student Safety
The Forsyth County Schools Transportation Department provides basic transportation service for students to their assigned stops in the morning and afternoon. School administrators and transportation staff have determined that for safety reasons, changes in bus transportation will not be permitted in Forsyth County Schools. Students who board a bus other than their assigned bus or request to get off the bus at other than their assigned stop will be returned to the school where the parent may pick them up.
Safety is our number one priority in providing bus transportation, and the practice of routinely issuing bus passes causes inconsistency and confusion for everyone; the student the school staff, the driver and even the parent. Students are expected to learn their stop, understand their driver’s expectations and practice safe riding, walking and waiting habits as they travel to and from school at their assigned stop. Drivers need to establish safe, orderly and respectful routines that include learning their students and developing positive relationships with them.
Please cooperate with the school and make car transportation arrangements whenever your student(s) need to be taken to any location other than their regular assigned afternoon bus stop.
We appreciate your support.
Q. How are bus stops assigned to students?A. The assignment of bus routes and stops is made by Transportation Department staff to effectively transport students to school “on time and ready to learn.” Students are assigned based on which route and stop is closest and/or most appropriate for their residence.
For elementary students, a day care provider may be chosen as the student’s “residence” for morning or afternoon routes, as long as it is in the student’s “home attendance zone” and as long as the Transportation Department can provide a safe route and bus stop for the location. Changes to the assigned stop may be requested by the parent or guardian on a Transportation Change Request Form. A student may be assigned one stop location in the morning and one stop location in the afternoon.
We will however, assign a stop based on our routing criteria and will make no special arrangements to locate a stop closer to a daycare provider due to inadequate staffing and/or planning by the business or person. The safety of students is the first consideration when determining bus stop locations. However, the safety of any school bus stop is evaluated with the understanding that the parent or guardian will provide supervision appropriate to the maturity level of the student(s) at the bus stop. Daycare providers are required to be at the designated stop when the bus arrives to receive students. If they are not present, students will be returned to school where the daycare representative or parent may pick them up.
Q. Why must students ride their assigned buses to their assigned stops?A. Forsyth County Schools provides basic transportation services for students. Our goal of safe, orderly and respectful transportation service can only be achieved when all partners (drivers, students, parents and school staff) develop safe, consistent habits and procedures concerning riding, loading and unloading, supervision at the stop and walking to and from the stop. The driver and student assigned to the bus develop a relationship that includes an understanding of expectations and requirements for safety on the assigned bus and stop.
When otherwise safe routines are disrupted, it may distract the driver, student or parent and place students at risk. Drivers must focus on the assigned students that are departing the bus to ensure their safety. Distractions already include traffic, pedestrians and students remaining on the bus. Drivers and students should not be required to deal with the added distraction of “checking passes and signatures” of guest riders or calling for “verbal authorization” from the school. It is a distraction from the job at hand, protecting students.Additionally, bus drivers assign seats based on “regular expected riders” and often there is little or no room to provide seats for additional riders. It is not reasonable to expect “regular riders” to lose their seat or disrupt their routine for non-assigned riders.
Therefore, students who board a bus other than their assigned bus or request to get off the bus at other than their assigned stop will be returned to the school where the parent may pick them up.