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We believe that a school bus is an extension of a classroom and it is important that the school authorities give adequate attention to the discipline and well-being of the children in buses. It is with this purpose we as a responsible school ensure that Conductors and Lady Attendants are there in every bus.
THE TRANSPORT DEPARTMENT AND PARENTS
We endeavour to provide the best possible service for both parents and students.We place the safety and responsibility of the children as our highest priority.
We value the parents' trust in our service and endeavor to provide the highest standards of care. In this regard our Customer Care Executives in the Transport Department are in constant touch with the parents. We listen to the parents.
STUDENT MANAGEMENT AND CONTROL
One area in student transportation that can cause very serious problems for the transportation supervisor, bus driver, and the school system, is student behaviour.
It is probably the most complex and demanding phase of the student transportation system, as well as the hardest to satisfactorily handle. Student behaviour on school buses can become a serious problem for bus drivers and the school if not properly and timely corrected.
A co-ordinated and mutually respected platform for the parents, school and the Transport Department in the form of a "Transport Committee" will go a long way in bringing about positive attitudinal changes in all concerned.
The best way to correct the student behaviour problem is to have a clear and definite understanding of what is expected on the part of all parties concerned. All guidance concerning student behaviour should be well known and clearly understood by bus drivers, students, parents, administrators and teachers and School Transport Services members. All concerned are requested to abide by the following:
TRANSPORT DEPARTMENT'S ADMINISTRATIVE RESPONSIBILITIES
The Transport Department at Podar sets the tone for the safe transportation of children. Clear and concise policy statements are made and adopted. The Transport Department will adhere to all the bus specifications and safety measures prescribed by the Regional and State Transport Authority. They are responsible for-
- Comprehensive evaluation of the transport system of each school
- Preparation of policies and procedures and effective implementation
- School bus routing efficiency audit
- Routing and logistics solutions
- Recruitment and training (pre-service training programme, Quarterly in-service training) of drivers, Conductors and Lady Attendants and monitoring their performance on a daily ongoing basis.
- Deployment of buses with specification prescribed by RTA / local authorities
- Maintenance and upkeep of buses
- Ensuring the highest standards in school transportation.
FUNCTIONAL RESPONSIBILITY OF THE TRANSPORT DEPARTMENT
- For bus drivers to effectively perform their duties, the Principal or person designated by the school must enforce rules and regulations concerning transportation of pupils.
- When cases of indiscipline, damage of buses or any misbehaviour are brought to the attention, take necessary disciplinary action.
- Should be aware of the seating plan of students in the buses, details of the routes and the time taken for picking-up and dropping-off of children.
- Create awareness of road safety and bus safety amongst the students through various activities including Class-room training.
- Provide a safe environment in the bus parking zone
- Provide necessary training to the conductors/ bus supervisors to take care of the students, to take their attendance in every trip and also etiquettes and manners in dealing with parents and students
- Teachers and administration staff of schools must be present at the parking zone to ensure safety of children when they arrive and depart.
THE SCHOOL AND TEACHERS :
- It should be mandatory that students are provided instructions in school on bus safety and receives one evaluation procedure at least once a year. Teachers have a golden opportunity to impart safety instructions and material in the classroom.
- Lessons can be geared around transportation according to grade level. Students can be asked to write compositions expressing feelings, reactions and concerns about transportation. Class discussions are beneficial. It just needs a little imagination and effort. Teachers can do some seemingly small things that will help educate the students, obtain brilliant ideas from them for us to emulate and to prevent accidents.
- Send students on time for buses. Let them not run to catch buses.
- Teachers should discourage students to carry bulky projects or instruments that might block aisles.
- Speak positively to students about transportation safety.
- Teachers should have a good knowledge of local rules and regulations regarding transportation.
THE SCHOOL AND TEACHERS
Students must bear their share of responsibility for safety while travelling in school buses. The privilege of any student to ride a school bus is conditioned upon their good behaviour and observance of the rules and regulations set forth by the school and transport operator. Certain levels of conduct are expected of any and all students riding the bus. All students shall conduct themselves in a manner conducive to the safe transportation of all. No conduct will be tolerated that will in any way cause distraction of a driver's attention that might result in unsafe operation of the bus. Students are expected to respect the authority of the bus driver and obey his/her instructions. If the rules are followed, all concerned can expect to have a safe bus trip.
WHILE WAITING TO BOARD THE BUS
- Arrive at your assigned bus stop five (5) minutes before the school bus arrives. The driver cannot wait for you, as it may create traffic problems.
- Do not play in the path of traffic and stand well away from the road when the bus approaches.
- Remember the danger zone around the bus. The danger zone is anywhere close enough to the bus to touch it. The bus driver cannot see you when you are in the danger zone.
- Do not damage other people’s property while waiting for the bus. Avoid making excessive noise.
- Fighting and playing at bus stops and on the way to and from school should be avoided.
- Never run alongside the bus when the bus is moving. Wait until the bus stops and the driver/conductor signals and then walk to the door and board the bus in an orderly manner. DO NOT PUSH OR SHOVE
WHILE RIDING ON THE BUS
- Obey the Marshall's/Lady Attendant's instructions. The Conductor of a school bus is in complete charge of students while they are on the bus. Complaints regarding discipline on the bus should be taken to the Principal / Transport Department.
- The Marshall / bus conductor has the authority to assign seats. Students shall remain properly seated while the bus is in motion.
- The windows of the bus must be closed at all times. On no account does any student have the right to open a window of a bus. This is in keeping with the preventive measures against any injury to the student.
- Refrain from talking to the driver except in an emergency.
- No one shall tamper with any equipment or operate any part of the bus.
- Do not mar or deface the bus. Students caught damaging bus equipment will be subject to disciplinary action and/or restitution.
- There is to be no fighting or profanity on the bus or any loud disturbances.
Students must not wave or shout at pedestrians or occupants of other vehicles. Do not throw objects from bus windows.
- Eating inside the bus is not permitted. Save snacks for snack time at school or till you get home. They may spill or you may choke if the bus goes over a bump.
- Use of tobacco and its by-products or drugs, in any form, is prohibited.
Bullying / fighting, use of abusive language is not permitted.
- Students are required to ride their assigned bus, unless they have written approval from the Transport Department.
WHILE LEAVING THE BUS
- When you leave the bus, hold the handrail.
- In case you need to cross a street, ensure that you cross it in front of the bus. Cross only when the driver/conductor gives a signal. Cross the street in single file.
- If you drop something near the bus, don't pick it up. Tell the driver or another adult.
- If everyone is getting off the bus, the people in the front leave first. Do not push.
- Allow small children and/or disabled children to board/alight first.
- Be familiar with the rules of emergencies.
Progress has been made in the improvement of safety and safety awareness in the transportation of students. However, one critical area that has not been explored to the fullest extent is the role and responsibility of parents and guardians of the students. Safety awareness must begin and be consistently reinforced at home. The following points are suggested for parents:
- Familiarize themselves with school and transport provider policies and procedures pertaining to riding a bus. Know their child's bus number, telephone numbers of the Bus Attendant, Transport Supervisor and School.
- Parents should try to establish the exact time their child should be at the bus stop in the morning. They should also recognize the dangers of students playing at the edge of a busy roadway.
- Warn their children of the dangers of strangers who appear friendly and hang around bus stops. Provide their child with a school bag to carry all their school supplies. Loose papers / materials are a serious hazard.
- Stress the importance of remaining properly seated and reasonably quiet and disciplined while aboard the bus.
- Familiarize them with emergency procedures and danger zones around the bus and suggest they discuss these zones with their children.
- Make sure children have their bus ID cards.
- Parents should explain to their child that situations aboard the bus may not always be familiar. The bus might have to take an alternative route, a substitute may be driving the bus, or occasionally another bus might be used. If the child is confused, they need to be encouraged to ask the Conductor, Lady Attendant or Driver relevant questions.
- Parents should also support policies of the school and transport provider.
RESPONSIBILITIES OF STUDENTS AND THEIR GUARDIANS AS PER RTA BOOKLET
- Guardians to drop their children to the school bus or pick-up point well before time. In the event of any delay from their part, they bear the responsibility of dropping their children to the school without any responsibility on the part of the School Transport Department.
- Assist in training and educating their children on the importance of safety and how to wait for the school bus and board it.
- Report to the Management of the school / transport department regarding any offence or failure on the part of the Lady Attendant/driver/conductor/marshals.
- The driver is responsible to return the student to the school if there is no person to collect him or her at the time of returning home and guardians are responsible for any associated outcome.
- The student must maintain cleanliness of the bus and advise the school management or his / her guardian in case the driver or any other student breaches the rules in transit.
- The Transport Department / School is solely entitled to deny any student from transport service in case any of the following condition apply
- If the student is to blame for delaying the trip more than three times in a single academic year.
- If the student breaches any safety rule and makes others liable to danger during the trip.
- If the student deliberately alights from the bus before arriving to the specified drop-off point, without a prior consent.
- If the student, against whom more than three written complaints were made during a single academic year, continues to cause troubles.
SCHOOL BUS DRIVER'S RESPONSIBILITIES
The conduct of students on a bus has a direct relationship to their safety. The position should be taken that no act or conduct that distracts the driver from safely maneuvering the school bus through traffic and operating the bus safely will be condoned or tolerated. Swift and firm action must be taken by the driver to solve and correct these problems.
TRANSPORT SUPERVISOR / CONDUCTOR'S / LADY ATTENDANT'S RESPONSIBILITIES
- ensure that students are picked up and dropped off at the designated points only.
- ensure that students are handed over directly to the parent or guardian only.
- handle children carefully and maintain safety and discipline on the bus
- help children to cross roads, wherever needed.
- Girl students will compulsorily be assisted by Lady Attendants only.
- communicate with parents politely in a disciplined manner
- report any misbehaviour of the student to the Principal/Transport Department
- clean the bus before and after every trip
- take daily attendance of students and give report to the Transport Department officials.
- physically check the bus after every trip to be sure that no child is left behind and/or
- no important papers / bags / education materials are left behind.
- ensure the bus is kept neat and tidy internally and externally, washed / cleaned everyday
- ensure that the curtains(if any) are drawn properly; no lose papers, clothes are inside the buses
- Ensure that route details and student details are pasted in each bus.