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Busing & Transportation : Getting to School Safely
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Busing & Transportation

Getting to School Safely

​Street Safety

As of September 1, 2014, the speed limit in all school zones is 30km/h from 7:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. on school days. 

School bus loading zones provide a safe area for students to embark and disembark the buses. Please do not drive into the school bus loading zone when you pick up or drop off your child.

It's dangerous to jaywalk or run between the buses. Help teach your child to safely cross the street around school buses.

Children should:

  • Stand back a safe distance from the bus
  • Wait until the bus leaves the stop
  • Walk to the closest intersection
  • Cross the street only when they have a clear view of traffic in both directions and it is safe to do so

Student Safety

The CBE and the School Bus carriers want to ensure your child's safety and make their experience on the bus a positive one. September is a hectic time. There are many new faces at each school and bus drivers do not have student lists. Until children are completely familiar with their new bus routes, they may board the wrong bus or miss their stop or they may get to their stop but not have anyone waiting to meet them.

The school bus driver wants your child to arrive home safely. To assist the bus driver, ensure you take the following steps:

  • Arrange to have someone (yourself or a caregiver) meet your child at the bus stop
  • Have a plan - make sure your child knows to stay on the bus if they have missed their stop, are on the wrong bus, or if no one is at their stop to meet them
  • Please put your contact information and your child's name inside their backpack
  • Teach your younger child to stay on the bus until they see their parent or caregiver.
  • If your child thinks they are lost or something is wrong, they should talk to the driver and not get off the bus. School bus drivers are in continuous contact with their dispatcher. Finding a child's home is much easier than finding a child who got off at the wrong stop. If your child stays on the bus, the driver will ensure your child is looked after.

School Bus Capacity

The bus capacity of standard charter school buses is 66 - 72 passengers, however, we recognize the problems associated with loading buses to maximum capacity. The general guidelines we use are:

  • Elementary students - 55 to 60 per bus depending on bus capacity
  • Junior High/Middle School students - 48 to 53 per bus depending on bus capacity

Seat Belts

School bus transportation is one of the safest forms of transportation. Yellow school and Calgary Transit buses are not equipped with seat belts. It is important to realize that discussions about "seat belts" on school buses refer to lap belts only, not the three-point lap/shoulder belt combination found in passenger cars and mini-vans.
Studies by the National Transportation Safety Board and the National Academy of Services in the US have shown that "compartmentalization" rather than seat belts is the best way to provide crash protection for school bus passengers.
Compartmentalization is an engineering design consisting of strong, closely spaced and high backed seats that have energy absorbing seat backs. This provides passenger safety by creating a protective envelope. Actual school bus crash data shows that lap belts provide little if any additional crash protection.

School Bus Rules

  1. The driver must be respected. The driver is in full charge of the bus and the driver's directions must be obeyed
  2. The driver may assign specific seats to students at any time
  3. Students must not extend arms or head out of windows. While the bus is in motion, students must remain seated facing forward, and must not try to get on or off the bus, or move about within the bus
  4. Students must not throw paper or other waste materials on the floor or out of the windows of the bus
  5. While on the bus, students must conduct themselves in a quiet and courteous manner, showing consideration for the comfort and safety of others
  6. Scuffling, fighting, smoking, and the use of obscene language on the bus are prohibited
  7. Students must not distract the bus driver with excessive noise
  8. Students causing wilful damage to a bus will be held fully accountable
  9. When leaving the bus, students must observe the instructions of the bus driver, and must not cross the road without having a clear view in both directions
  10. No student or parent is permitted on the school bus unless they have a valid bus pass, the bus driver's authorization, or the principal's authorization

Parent Responsibilities For Their Bused Child

When the Calgary Board of Education provides subsidized transportation to students, the parent or guardian of  the student is responsible for:

  1. If applicable, completing the Fee Waiver Application and submit it by the established deadline
  2. Completing the Transportation Contract and ensuring that an accurate and current address and phone number are provided
  3. Submitting the completed contract to your child’s school or to the address provided on the contract, by the end of June
  4. Ensuring students understand and obey the School Bus Rules (see Administrative Regulation 6096 – School Bus Rules )
  5. Ensuring students are punctual and arrive at the designated pick-up location five minutes prior to the scheduled stop time
  6. Ensuring students are respectful of property owners, and do not use private property as a long term gathering point
  7. Ensuring students are properly dressed for inclement weather
  8. Paying for any willful damage caused by their student while riding to and from school
  9. Ensuring that students know how to recognize their bus stop and find their way home safely
  10. Ensuring that Kindergarten and Grade 1 students have their name, address and telephone numbers attached to their clothing for the first weeks of school
  11. Escorting and meeting younger students at the bus stop and ensuring their student’s safety while traveling to and from their bus
  12. Ensuring students have appropriate medication, if required, and understand what to do if they need to use the medication
  13. Establishing emergency procedures for students, so that they know what to do if:
    1. The bus is late or does not arrive
    2. No one is home, or
    3. There is an emergency school closure
  14. Utilizing the transportation phone protocol system or email when concerns/questions arise.


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 Supporting Documents



 School Bus Orientation


Last modified: 11/28/2014 11:28 AM
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