The Transportation Department provides home-to-school transportation for more than 1200 students each school day. Twenty-nine school bus drivers drive about 318,000 miles each year to ensure District students get to and from school safely. Carrying students on school buses is the safest method of transportation. Additionally, bus service reduces congestion within the city and at the schools. It also reduces overall exhaust emissions by reducing the number of vehicles taking students to and from school.
Several students have special transportation needs. The District provides bussing options that accommodate those needs.
In addition to home-to-school transportation, this department provides activity buses and sports buses for a variety of athletic events and education enrichment programs.
2021-2022 School Year Starts August 12, 2021. Mask's are required on the bus.
TRANSPORTATION SAFETY PLAN
Santa Maria Joint Union High School District is committed to the safety of our students. For a copy of our safety plan click on the Transportation Safety Plan link below.
GUIDELINES FOR RIDING THE BUS
Don't lose your privilege to ride the bus.
Riding a school bus is a privilege provided by the school district and should be treated as such.
- Every time a student violates a bus rule it raises the chance the driver is distracted.
- Every time the driver is distracted and raises the chance of an accident happening.
- Therefore, every time a student violates a bus rule, he or she directly raises the chance of the bus being in an accident!
General Safety Rules
- Obey the instructions of the bus driver. At no time will a student act toward or address comments to a bus driver in a disrespectful manner, or refuse to cooperate with the driver.
- Board and leave the bus at designated stops only.
- Only the students who are eligible to ride may be transported and must ride their assigned bus.
- Do not ask to ride home on another bus with a friend.
- It is the responsibility of the parent to provide transportation to school if a child misses the bus.
- Students will abide by the individual school's rules and regulations concerning bus students, including conduct and dress code.
Buses will run as close as possible to the published schedule. However, the first several weeks of school are a period of adjustment. Routes will not run early but may occasionally run late until revisions are made. Please keep this in mind when arranging personal schedules.
Parents should discuss with their children a plan of action if the morning bus is missed. Students should know if their parents expect them to return home, go to a neighbor, walk to school, etc. (When mechanical or other problems cause a bus to run late, the schools will be notified, and the bus will make every stop, regardless of how late it is.)
Procedures for Waiting for the Bus
- Be at your bus stop five minutes before scheduled pick-up time.
- The driver will not pick up a student unless they are at their designated stop.
- Stand on the sidewalk or back from the roadway while waiting for the bus.
- When the bus approaches, form a line and be prepared to load immediately.
- Stand clear of the bus until it comes to a complete stop.
- If a student misses the bus, the bus will not return. The student is to go home immediately and call their parents if they are not home.
- Food or drinks other than water.
- Live animals or insects.
- Glass containers.
- Alcoholic beverages.
- Weapons, explosives (such as fireworks), knives, water guns, unsheathed pointed articles, or any other object that may be considered dangerous or conflict with the safety of the students and the driver.
- Students will keep aisles clear. Any article (projects, band instruments, etc.) too large, to be held in the student's lap or which they impose on other riders, will not be allowed on the bus.
- Matches or cigarette lighters.
- Students will not eat on any school bus. Plastic water bottles filled with water only will be allowed on any school bus. Bus Rules The bus is an extension of the classroom. Students are required to conduct themselves on the bus in a manner consistent with established standards for classroom behavior in accordance with the Code of Conduct. Failure to follow these rules will lead to suspension of your riding privileges utilizing the District progressive discipline plan:
- Follow the directions of the driver 5 CCR 14103
- Students are required to conduct themselves at bus stops as they would in class AR5131.1 (a)
- Students are required to use their assigned bus stop. VC2212.(b)
- Have an approved ID card, not use another person s card AR 5131.1 (A)
- Shall cross the street only in front of school bus VC 22112 (d) (2)
- No foul language or rude behavior AR5131.1.(a)
- Keep all body parts and objects to yourself and inside the bus 13 CCR 1217 (e)
- No eating or drinking on the bus AR5131.1.(a)
- No tobacco products, illegal substances, or hazardous materials on the bus AR5131.1.(a)
- Obstructing the aisle or emergency exit 13 CCR 1216(c)
- Creating or encouraging excessive noise AR5131.1.(a)
- Throwing objects inside or outside of the bus AR5131.1.(a)
- Inappropriate public display of affection Ed Code 48900 (k)
*The list above is not considered exhaustive
Progressive Discipline Procedures – Violating Safe Conduct
1st Conduct Report – Student will receive a warning.
2nd Conduct Report – Student will receive a warning.
3rd Conduct Report – Will result in 2-day suspension of riding privileges.
4th Conduct Report – Will result in 5-day suspension of riding privileges.
More than 4 Conduct Reports – Student will be suspended from bus riding privileges with a referral for possible revocation of riding privileges
The following items are considered more severe and will lead to denial of transportation services until the appropriate administrator can determine the length of the suspension, possible revocation of transportation service, possible expulsion and/or contact with law enforcement:
- Possession of a weapon Ed Code 48900(b), 48900(m), 48915
- Possession of any illegal substance or alcohol Ed Code 48900(c), 48900(d)
- Lighting matches, lighters, smoking or setting fires on the bus Ed Code 48900 (c & d)
- Tampering, damaging, or defacing school bus AR5131.1.(a) Ed code 48900(f & k)-Parents may be held financially responsible for repairs
- Intimidation of students or staff Ed Code 48900 (o, n, 48900.4, 32050, 32051, PC 415, 415.5
- Behavior that is deemed unsafe to other passengers or the general public Ed Code 48900 (k)
- Physical or verbal abuse towards the driver Ed Code 48900 (a), 48915
*The list above is not considered exhaustive
- The school district reserves the right to assign student seating on school buses for safety, efficiency, and disciplinary reasons.
- Assigned seats are subject to change at any time during the school year.
Getting on the Bus
- Do not push or shove.
- Use the handrail and steps.
- Go to your seat. The bus will not move until all students are seated.
- Students from the first stop may be assigned in the back of the bus until the last students picked up are seated in the front.
- Once the bus door departs a student may not be admitted to ride.
Getting off the Bus
- Stay seated until the bus is completely stopped.
- Use the handrail to take one-step at a time when leaving the bus.
- Wait for your turn to leave the bus; pushing and crowding will only slow exiting and may cause an accident.
- The student will be released from the bus only at their designated bus stop or attending campus.
- Stay clear of the bus when the engine is started. Do not chase or hang on the bus at any time.
- If any article drops or rolls near or under the bus, do not go after it. Go to the door of the bus and ask the driver for help.
Field trips will not be booked without a Field Trip Request Form
To request field trip transportation, contact your department chair to submit a Field Trip Request Form.
If you are looking to have American Star, Santa Barbara Airbus provide transportation, you may call them to get a quote. They are only providing a quote and will not hold the bus for you until they have a signed contract. After you receive a quote, contact your department chair to obtain all approvals and they will process it with the Transportation Department. Transportation will book the bus with the vendor.
If you are looking to use any other vendor, please contact us as soon as possible. These are our current approved vendors and we will look at others as needed.
Limousines, limo buses and drivers require a Special Drivers Certificate, SPAB license. Companies also must have insurance meeting SMJUHSD standards. These vendors must be approved by the Transportation Department.
TOUR BUS PAPERWORK
A new California law (VC 28160) requires any time the District uses a bus that is not equipped with a child check system that we have to document.
The first is a complete list of students on board the bus, name, address, phone number.
The second is a form that requires the chaperone and driver to do a student check a loading throughout the trip. This form must be completed and sent to the transportation at the completion of every trip.
Please make a copy and complete the form