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0-07: Staff training for health/safety emergencies
2-07: Learning social skills
4-20: Individualized health services plans
7-01: Healthy and safe social environment
7-07: Actions against bullying
7-08: Policies on student discipline
8-06: Inter-professional collaboration, staff mentoring
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National Association of School Psychologists
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (US Department of Transportation)
Information on child safety restraint systems, training for child passenger safety technicians, and on laws and regulations governing transporting children. The "Child Passenger Safety" pages include information on transporting children with disabilities, and school bus safety.
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6-20 - Safe student conduct during transportation
 

Establish and implement comprehensive training programs for staff and for students so that students demonstrate acceptable behavior during transportation and during drop-off and pickup.

   
Rationale
 

Training transportation staff to manage student behavior can prevent serious injuries that originate with or are exacerbated by poor student conduct. Behavior management techniques, interaction with students' families and collaboration with students' regular school programs can enhance transportation safety.

   
Commentary
 

Managing student behavior and having appropriate discipline are unusually challenging when students are being transported. Poor conduct can lead to vandalism, injury, and death. Transportation staff must address behavior management issues of all students who share the same vehicle, including those with special needs. Students and families must understand the rules and expectations. Safety should be the focus of student conduct, which includes: keeping passengers seated, using safety belts when available, and keeping arms and heads inside windows. Excessive noise and unsafe student behavior can distract or harm the driver, increasing the risk of a crash.

One way to enforce safe student conduct on school buses is to have additional staffing on the bus. Teach school transportation staff basic behavior management techniques (e.g., how to give positive reinforcement for good behavior and discourage bad behavior). Transportation staff should have rules that are simple, realistic, and enforced fairly. Transportation staff should monitor student behavior, be consistent with their responses, and take a positive attitude and approach with students. Strong and consistent enforcement of discipline in accordance with district policy must be maintained.

Students with special health, mental health, and educational needs (including but not limited to students with primarily mental and emotional disabilities) can have individualized transportation behavior protocols written into their Individualized Education Program. Arrange this if behavior problems are anticipated when the student's Individualized Education Program is developed or as they arise. Individualized behavioral protocols designed to promote acceptable conduct during transportation should be developed together with students' families and with the multidisciplinary teams that are involved with students' on-site education and support. School personnel who transport students with special health care needs and behavior management problems must follow all federal regulations and school district policies related to students with special needs.

   
REFERENCES
 

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. School health guidelines to prevent unintentional injuries and violence. MMWR Recomm Rep. 2001;50(RR-22):1-73.

Ellis, Jim. Bus Attendant: Training and Resource Manual. Syracuse, New York: Pupil Transportation Safety Institute, 1995.

Illinois State Board of Education. Student Management. Illinois School Bus Driver Training Curriculum, pp. 52-59, July 1995.

Iowa Department of Education. Student transportation: behavior management on the bus. Available at : http://www.state.ia.us/educate/ecese/asis/trans/behavmod.html.

US Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Developing a School Transportation Safety Program. Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; 2001. Available at: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/people/injury/buses/GTSS/program.html.

US Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Highway safety guideline No. 17-pupil transportation safety. In: Uniform Guidelines for State Highway Safety Programs: Highway Safety Program Guideline Numbers and Titles. Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; 2001. Available at: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/nhtsa/whatsup/tea21/tea21programs/402Guide.html.

US Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Student management. In: School Bus Driver In-Service Safety Series. Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; 2001. Available at: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/people/injury/buses/schbus/schoolbus_drivers/topic_2/index.html.

 
          
 
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