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Tuolumne COE |  AR  3542  Business and Noninstructional Operations

School Bus Drivers   

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Students transported in a school bus or in a student activity bus shall be under the authority of, and responsible directly to, the driver of the bus. The driver shall be held responsible for the orderly conduct of the students while they are on the bus or being escorted across a street, highway or road. (5 CCR 14103)

(cf. 3540 - Transportation)

A bus driver shall have the authority to discontinue the operation of a school bus whenever he/she determines that it is unsafe to continue.

Administrative regulations related to bus driver authority shall be made available to parents/guardians, students, teachers and other interested parties. (5 CCR 14103)

(cf. 3516.5 - Emergency Schedules)

(cf. 3543 - Transportation Safety and Emergencies)

(cf. 5131.1 - Bus Conduct)

Qualifications, Training and Monitoring

All drivers employed to operate school buses or student activity buses shall possess, at a minimum, both of the following documents issued by the state Department of Motor Vehicles: (Education Code 39830.1; Vehicle Code 12517)

1. A valid driver's license for the appropriate class of vehicle to be driven

2. A certificate which permits the driver to operate either school buses or student activity buses, as applicable

(cf. 4200 - Classified Personnel)

(cf. 4211 - Recruitment and Selection)

The Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools or designee may use an electronic fingerprinting system, managed by the California Department of Justice, to fingerprint an applicant for an original certificate to drive a school bus or student activity bus. (Vehicle Code 12517.3)

(cf. 4212.5 - Criminal Record Check)

The County Superintendent or designee shall ensure that school bus drivers receive training which includes:

1. First aid practices (Vehicle Code 12522)

2. The proper actions to be taken in the event that a school bus is hijacked (Education Code 39831)

3. The proper installation of mobile seating devices in the bus securement systems (Education Code 56195.8)

(cf. 3541.2 - Transportation for Students with Disabilities)

(cf. 4231 - Staff Development)

School bus drivers shall be subject to drug and alcohol testing in accordance with County Office policy and the requirements of federal law.

(cf. 4112.42/4212.42/4312.42 - Drug and Alcohol Testing for School Bus Drivers)

The County Superintendent or designee shall notify the Department of Motor Vehicles within five days whenever any school bus driver has tested positive for drugs or alcohol, is dismissed for a cause related to student transportation safety, or whenever a driver so dismissed has been reinstated. (Vehicle Code 1808.8, 13376)

(cf. 4215 - Evaluation/Supervision)

(cf. 4218 - Dismissal/Suspension/Disciplinary Action)


The school bus driver's primary responsibility is to safely transport students to and from school/program site and school activities. He/she shall follow procedures contained in the County Office's transportation safety plan.

The driver shall not require any student to leave the bus en route between home and school/program site or other destinations. (5 CCR 14103)

The driver shall stop to load or unload students only at school bus stops designated by the County Superintendent or designee, or authorized by the County Superintendent or designee for school/program activity trips. (Vehicle Code 22112)

(cf. 3541 - Transportation Routes and Services)

The driver shall activate the amber warning light system, flashing red signal lights and stop arm signal and shall escort students in accordance with Vehicle Code 22112.

The driver shall immediately report all school bus accidents to the California Highway Patrol, the County Superintendent or designee, and the driver's employer. (13 CCR 1219)

The driver also shall report the following to the County Superintendent or designee:

1. Recurring and serious student misbehavior

2. Parental and student complaints

3. Traffic violations

4. Consistently late school/program dismissals which cause transportation delays

5. Overload runs

6. Mechanical or other problems with buses and equipment

Legal Reference:


39830-39842 School buses

40080-40090.5 Training required to obtain or renew bus driver certificate

45125.1 Criminal background checks for contractors

56195.8 Training in installation of mobile seating devices


241.3 Assault against school bus driver

243.3 Battery against school bus driver


1808.8 Dismissal for safety-related cause

2570-2575 Transportation of students

12517-12517.4 Certification requirements

12522 First aid training for school bus drivers

13376 Driver certificates; revocation or suspension; sex offense prosecution

22112 School bus signals; roadway crossings

25257 School bus; flashing light signal system

25257.2 School bus used for transportation of developmentally disabled person

34501.6 School buses; reduced visibility

34508.5 Investigation of accidents


14103 Authority of the driver

14104 School bus driver instructor


1200-1228 General provisions, school bus regulations


571.222 Federal motor vehicle safety standard #222

Management Resources:


California Highway Patrol:

California Department of Motor Vehicles:

California Department of Justice:


approved: May 30, 2008 Sonora, California