The district’s fleet consists of nine 72-passenger school buses, three 44-passenger buses, two 23 passenger, and one handicap bus. These buses travel more than 510 miles daily on 10 routes to transport more than 850 students to and from school. The buses are part of a well organized, safety oriented transportation system, with each bus inspected and repaired regularly.
The school bus driver is sometimes referred to as the “silent teacher.” Because of the precious cargo transported by these drivers, great care is given to their qualifications, certification, training, and operational requirements. Drivers must pass an annual physical and medical exam as prescribed by the Texas Department of Public Safety, a pre-employment drug and alcohol test, criminal records background check, and an annual driver’s license record check. Drivers are also subject to random alcohol and drug screenings throughout their employment.
Transportation is provided free of charge to all students.
- Read and understand this form. Have your child return the registration form portion to their bus driver immediately.
- Ensure that your child is aware of, cooperates in, and obeys the safety rules on this form, as well as bus driver instructions.
- Ensure that your child rides the appropriate bus.
- Ensure that your child demonstrates safe and appropriate behavior at the bus stop.
- Ensure that you (or an adult, aged 18 or older, with written permission granted) are at the bus stop to receive your Pre-K or Kindergarten child. Pre-K or Kindergarten children may get off the bus with an older sibling (1st grade or older) who rides the same bus.
- If a student needs to ride a different bus or get off the bus at a different stop (emergency situations only), you must provide a written notification to the transportation department in person or by fax so that the driver can be notified.
Bus Route Information
- All bus routes are designed to operate as efficiently and effectively as possible while still meeting the students’ needs.
- When a route change is necessary that will effect pick-up/drop-off times and/or bus number, notification will be made in the form of notes handed out to the students two afternoons prior to the effective date of the change.
- If students are not present at a bus stop for three continuous days, the bus stop will be discontinued without notice to the parents. Parents must contact the Transportation Department to resume service to that bus stop.
- Where possible, stops are located such that students should walk no more than .5 mile to the nearest bus stop.
- The school district staff and bus drivers share your concern about the safety of your child. You can assist in providing a safe bus ride by reviewing the following items with your child.
Meeting the Bus
- Students must be on time and visible at the bus stop. It is recommended that students be at their bus stop five minutes before pick-up time. Once a bus departs a stop or school, it will not stop for late students.
- Students must not stand on the traveled portion of the roadway while waiting for the bus.
- Students must wait in an orderly manner and must not approach a moving bus until it stops. Once the bus has stopped, the student may walk toward the bus to board.
- Students must enter the bus single file in a carefully and orderly manner as instructed.
- Once on the bus, students must go directly to their seat and be seated properly so the bus may continue the route.
Bus Safety Rules
- Observe the same conduct level as is expected in the classroom.
- Be courteous. Profanity is not allowed.
- Do not eat or drink on the bus.
- Do not litter or damage the bus in any way.
- Cooperate with the driver. The driver is authorized to assign seats.
- All items prohibited at school are also prohibited on the bus.
- Remain seated while the bus is moving with all body parts inside the windows.
- Students must keep feet on the floor in front of them; not in the aisle or draped over the back of the seat. Students must sit facing forward while the bus is in motion as if they were wearing seat belts.
- Students are not not permitted to shout, or gesture to passing vehicles or pedestrians from the bus.
- Students may not throw any object including trash or paper either from within or out of the bus while waiting for, riding, or after leaving the bus.
- Fighting, horseplay, and throwing objects are prohibited.
- Students must stay out of the driver's seat and may not tamper with any operating equipment.
- No live/dead animals or flammable materials are allowed.
- Large, bulky items that cannot fit under the seat or in the lap of the student are not allowed on the bus. Arrangements must be made for the parent to transport these items.
- No skateboards, balls, roller blades, or balloons may be brought on the bus.
- Absolute quiet is required at railroad crossings.
Departing the Bus
- Upon leaving the bus; students must wait until the bus comes to a complete stop before standing to exit. Standing is not permitted on a moving bus.
- When getting off of the bus, students should move quickly but safely away from the unloading area.
- Exit single file in an orderly manner and walk away from the bus.
- The emergency door at the rear of the bus is to be used in emergency situations only. It is not to be used for boarding or departing the bus.
- Students are allowed to board and depart the bus at designated stops ONLY! They may not board or depart from a bus at any other stop than that which has been properly authorized by parents or school authorities.
- If it is necessary to cross a street or roadway, students must wait until driver signals them to cross. When crossing the street or roadway they must cross 10-15 feet in front of the bus to ensure that the driver sees them.
Gated Communities, Private Property, and Construction
- River Road ISD buses are not permitted to operate on private property. Gated communities and apartment complexes are considered private property.
- Neighborhoods that are under construction pose a safety hazard for large vehicles like school buses. Therefore, River Road ISD buses do not route through areas where heavy construction is present.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is responsible for discipline on the bus?
The driver is responsible for the safety and discipline on the school bus. Misconduct and safety violations by students are reported to the assistant principal at the school, who assumes the responsibility for taking proper action. Students who do not behave properly may lose the privilege of riding the bus. The district has the right to deny transportation to those students whose behavior jeopardizes the safety of others.
Is live audio and video surveillance in progress?
Drivers and passengers are subject to audio and video monitoring in accordance with Texas Education Code section 26.009(b)(1). Videotapes may be viewed by employees of River Road ISD if necessary to perform their job duties in the best interest of the students. Parents are not permitted to view the tapes as it would infringe on the privacy of the other students on the bus as protected under the Family Education Rights to Privacy Act (FERPA). Videotapes will be strictly controlled by the Transportation Department to ensure confidentiality.
What if I have a question?
The transportation department will be happy to answer any questions you have regarding pupil transportation. Questions regarding student discipline should be directed to the student’s school first. The transportation department may be reached at (806) 383-3347. Office hours on school days are 6:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. On in-service days, office hours are 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
What happens to bus service during bad weather?
If school is in session, the buses will run. The decision to cancel school or to dismiss school early will be made by the superintendent. Local radio and television stations will be advised to announce instructions before classes start. In case of local flooding or hazardous weather conditions, students will not be dismissed from school unless the transportation director determines that it is safe for children to travel to their homes. In the event of flooding conditions, the buses will travel as close to the normal bus stops as possible without jeopardizing the safety of the vehicle and passengers. It is advised that parents be aware of flooding conditions and make arrangements to meet their children at the bus stop when possible. Any students that are unable to be safely delivered home will be returned to the school for the parent to pick up. When there are rain showers or cold temperatures, the students are still expected to be at their bus stop.
What happens when items are left on the bus?
Articles that are left on the bus will remain on the bus for the student to retrieve the next time the student rides the bus. Lunches that are found in the morning will be sent to the school as soon as possible. If a parent wishes to pick up an item at our office, they may do so during normal office hours listed to the left. The transportation department does not maintain a “Lost and Found”.