It is the policy of the Boards of Directors of the Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union, Bennington School District, Inc., Mount Anthony Union School District, North Bennington Graded School District, Pownal School District, Shaftsbury School District, and Woodford School District to provide reasonable and necessary transportation to students in accordance with 16 VSA §1221.
Students are provided transportation pursuant to the following conditions:
I. ELEMENTARY DISTRICTS
1. Transportation will not be provided for any student attending school outside of their designated school attendance zone (policy #5030) except at administrative recommendation or under the provisions of No Child Left Behind.
2. Within the Bennington School District only:
a. in cases where a student is placed in a school outside of his or her designated attendance zone by administrative initiative, the student will be provided transportation except in cases where the student resides within the specified walking distances.
3. Each District shall adopt, with the recommendation of the Superintendent, its own Administrative Regulations specifying the maximum walking distance from school, beyond which a student is entitled to transportation. The calculation shall be based on actual walking distance, not radius.
4. For reasons of safety, the Superintendent may provide for transportation of students who reside within the specified walking distances, if in the Superintendent's opinion, traffic conditions, sidewalks, crossing-guard availability and other considerations warrant making the exception. The Superintendent has the authority to make exceptions by expanding services.
5. For Pownal School District which operates its own buses:
Bus routes and schedules shall be published in the local press prior to the opening of the school year.
6. For the Shaftsbury School District:
Bus routes and schedules shall not be published in the local press prior to the opening of school due to safety and privacy concerns. The routes will be distributed directly to families prior to the opening of school each year.
II. MOUNT ANTHONY UNION DISTRICT
1. Students living beyond the 1-1/2 mile radius of their designated school building shall be picked up at the bus pickup point nearest their home and will be responsible to arrive at that pickup point by their own means.
2. Students living within the 1-1/2 mile radius are not eligible for transportation services.
3. Students who live outside of the MAUHS District No. 14 residence areas are not eligible for transportation services.
4. Bus routes and schedules shall be published in the local press prior to the opening of school year.
5. Parents having requests for transportation not provided by established routes and/or schedules in exceptional situations, should present such request in writing to the Superintendent. Each such request will be presented to the Board with appropriate recommendations.
6. Bus requests for extra-curricular activities (excluding athletics) will be routed through building administrators to the Central Office.
7. Bus requests for athletic events will be routed through the Athletic Director.
A. The person in charge of each activity will have the responsibility of assuring that the bus is as clean when their students leave it as when they entered it.
III. FOR ALL DISTRICTS: BUS ROUTES, RESPONSIBILITIES OF CONTRACTORS
1. Bus routes will be established for the needs of SVSU Districts and the transportation needs of their students by the Superintendent or his/her designee in conjunction with the busing contractor.
a. However, students who are eligible to attend public schools within the SVSU but who attend private schools located within the SVSU geographic area may be provided transportation on a space available basis, up to the legal limits of the vehicle assigned to that route. These students may be eligible on a space available basis for transportation from a designated bus stop to the public school being served by that route.
2. Alternate routes due to seasonal snow or mud may be necessary on a temporary basis. The busing contractor will work with the appropriate town road commissioner and the Superintendent's office when circumstances dictate.
3. Bus routes and schedules shall be communicated to parents and guardians prior to the opening of school year.
4. It is the responsibility of the busing contractor to employ qualified drivers in compliance with all conditions as follows: SVSU Policy #4080, #3101
A. The Contractor agrees to furnish careful and competent drivers in compliance with SVSU policy #4080 - Criminal Record Checks, and Mandatory Drug and Alcohol Testing in compliance with SVSU policy #3101 each of whom holds a valid Vermont Driver's license with School Bus Driver's endorsement and otherwise meets the requirements of the State of Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles and other governmental authorities having jurisdiction over the transportation of students. Drivers shall be required to obtain and maintain certification in workplace first aid and CPR training prior to beginning the school year, or within thirty days of employment.
See the following page for policy on Transportation as a Related Service in Special Education.
POLICY ON TRANSPORTATION AS A RELATED SERVICE IN SPECIAL EDUCATION
It is the intent of Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union Bennington School District, Inc., Mount Anthony Union School District, North Bennington Graded School District, Pownal School District, Shaftsbury School District, and Woodford School District to provide free and appropriate public education to all eligible handicapped students. State regulations (2366.2.3) and federal law require that transportation as a related service be provided at no cost to the parent if a child requires such service in order to benefit from special education. IEP Team shall follow procedures in the SVSU Special Education Manual when documenting the decision to provide transportation as a related service.