Parents and guardians are an important part of the total safety awareness program for students who travel to and from school by bus. Students can benefit from learning to become safe pedestrians and passengers.
Here's how you can Help:
Allow enough time in the morning for unhurried, calm school preparation time.
Prepare as much as possible the night before.
Have your children wear bright, contrasting colored coats or put a piece of high visibility, reflective tape on coats and backpacks.
Help your children to leave on time. Allow for weather and plan to arrive at the bus stop five minutes before the scheduled departure time but not more than 10 minutes.
Go with younger children to the bus stop or have older children assist.
Tell your children to walk in groups, if possible.
Please train pets to stay in the yard, away from bus traffic.
Remind your children to walk on the sidewalks or out of the street, single file, facing traffic, and as close to the edge of the road as possible.
Teach your children to Stop, look left, right, and then left again before crossing the street.
Running games, shoving, or horseplay is too dangerous at the bus stop and around traffic.
Tell your children to stand ten feet away from the street when waiting for the bus.
They should wait there until the bus driver says it's OK to board the bus.
If anything is dropped during loading or unloading the bus, children must wait for instructions from the bus driver before attempting to retrieve it.
12 feet on either side and 12 feet in front of the bus are considered the Danger Zone.
This is the area most difficult to SEE children around the school bus.
Teach your children to STOP and look before hurrying away from the bus as they exit at the end of the day.
No objects should be thrown from the bus.
Here's how you can help with students with special needs :
Be at home or have a designated responsible person there when your child is scheduled to arrive from school.
If you have an emergency and you or a responsible person cannot be at home for the delivery of your child, notify your child's school as soon as possible.
If you are running late notify dispatch at 805-641-5000 ext. 1320.
If you child is ill and unable to ride the bus, please notify dispatch at 805-641-5000 ext. 1320.
Notify Pupil Services/Special Education Department at 805-641-5000 immediately if there are any changes to your personal circumstances.
(i.e. address change, telephone contact numbers, alternate address information).
· Observe the same conduct rules as the classroom while riding a Ventura Unified School District school bus.
· Use appropriate language and be courteous to your bus operator and fellow passengers.
· Do not eat, drink, or smoke on the bus.
· Throwing objects out of a window or littering the bus is prohibited.
· Sit in your assigned seat and remain seated at all times until you are at your final destination.
· Obey the directives of the bus operator.
· Keep your hands, feet, and head inside of the bus at all times.
· Respect school property. You and your parent or guardian will be responsible for any damage you cause to a Ventura Unified School District bus.
· Inappropriate gestures or comments to passing motorists or others outside of the school bus is not allowed.
Frequently Asked Questions
What if my child's bus is running late? Contact Dispatch in the event of a delay at 805-641-5000 ext. 1320. We will at that time, ascertain from the driver an estimated time of arrival.
Is every student with a disability eligible for special transportation services? No. Only students whose IEP specifies that special transportation services are required to enable the student to obtain a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) will be eligible.
What does the IEP team consider when it is deciding whether or not my child is eligible for special transportation services? The IEP team considers a number of factors including, the student's disability, the location of the student's special education services, the student's communication abilities; and the student's reliance on special equipment.
What kinds of services does the district provide? The district provides the transportation services specified by the IEP team.
Are safety devices used when transporting my child? Safety devices as appropriate, are used to properly secure and protect passengers. Additionally, all buses have communication equipment that ensures that the bus operator has communications with the department. In an emergency situation the driver is able to contact emergency personnel with their Nextel cell phone/two-way radio.
Will special transportation service, if recommended by the IEP team, cost me anything? No. There is no charge for transportation services if the IEP team has determined that transportation services are required. However, personal equipment such as an appropriate wheel chair or car seat, if needed, is the responsibility of the parent or guardian to provide.
How long will it take for a route to be scheduled for my child? After transportation services has received a completed transportation request from Pupil Services/Special Education your student will be routed within three business days.
Where will the bus pick up and deliver my child? The Transportation operations office will provide you with your bus stop. This may or may not be located at your residence. Some students are assigned to corner school bus stops. As a student's needs dictate, accommodations in services will be made from the least restrictive environment.
What should I do if I have an emergency and cannot be home to receive my child? If your child has not been picked up by the driver notify the school site and instruct them to keep your child a the school. If your child has already been picked up and there will be no one at the bus stop to receive him/her the driver will return your child back to school, unless you have completed an authorization form to release your child unattended.
If I move, what should I do to be sure that transportation services will continue for my child? Contact Pupil Services/Education Department at 805-641-5000 with your new address. Transportation may need as much as three school days to effect a change in service for your child.
I left an item on the bus - How do I get it back? If a personal item was mistakenly left behind on the bus, contact the Transportation Services Department at 805-641-5000 ext. 1320. We will make arrangements for the item to be taken to your pupil's school or brought back to the transportation facility were you can pick it up. Any items not claimed will be kept in the lost in found.
What if I am not at home or at the stop to receive my special education child? If you arrive at home and discover that an attempt was made to deliver your child at home, please contact Dispatch, and we will give you information regarding delivering your child or informing you that your child has been returned to school.
Why don't school buses have seat belts? School buses do not have seat belts because of their structural design. Instead of using restraints as do automobiles, school buses rely on a different theory called compartmentalization to reduce the risk of injury during an accident. Compartmentalization proves most effective in reducing the trauma of impact on small bodies. The force of impact in a crash is more evenly absorbed throughout the entire body reducing the risk of severe injury to any one part of the body.