FAQs

  • What determines a bus stop?

    Posted by:

    The goal is to consistently identify bus stops in neighborhoods on the consideration of safety, efficiency, least cost, and shortest over-all ride times. Bus stops are central to where all of the students are coming from. Some house stops are made on very busy roads. We generally do not send buses into cul-de-sacs or dead-end roads because of lack of safe access or the ability of the bus to turn around.

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  • If I am registering or moving in August or September, do I need to call transportation services?

    Posted by:

    YES! The Transportation Department begins downloading student information from each of the schools during the first week of August. Anyone registering or moving beginning with the first week of August must call the transportation office to make arrangements for transportation services before the new school year (unless you already contacted your child's school prior to Aug. 1).

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  • The bus goes right by my house. Why can't it stop here?

    Posted by:

    School bus stops are placed in central locations to shorten route length and times. Transportation services make every effort to see that these stops are safe and have appropriate walking routes to them. By law, school buses must also have at least one to three hundred feet between stops (determined by a road's speed limit). The higher frequency of stops made by the bus increases the dangers for an accident because of impatient motorists and increasing the number of stops, makes the student ride time longer.

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  • Who has the authority to change my bus stop or route?

    Posted by:

    The school district's transportation department and its contractors are the only authority that can make changes to bus routes and stops. School bus drivers do not have the authority to make changes to routes or student pickup/drop off locations. If one believes that the current bus stop is unsafe and/or does not fit the bus stop criteria set forth by the district, please fill out a "Bus Stop Change Request" form.

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  • We live on a cul-de-sac. Will the bus come down our street?

    Posted by:

    Except to transport special education students, buses generally are not routed down cul-de-sacs because of the danger to small children and property while the bus is turning around or backing up in the small area.

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  • What determines walking distances to a school?

    Posted by:

    The walking area is determined by measuring the shortest distance from the student's residence (end of driveway), by reasonably safe walkway, to the property of the school the student attends. The walking zone distances is established by the School Board. Currently it is one(1) mile for Grades K-12. *K-6 boundaries are often less due to traffic/pedestrian hazards. Call the transportation office at 320-253-9370 for specific address information.

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  • Why can I not see the bus stop from my house?

    Posted by:

    The school district provides transportation for about 9,000 students to and from school each day. The district is not able to position bus stops so that all parents or daycare providers are able to see the stop from their home. It is the responsibility of the parents, guardian, or daycare provider to ensure that each student arrives safely at the bus stop.

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  • Why do some children have to cross the street to board the school bus?

    Posted by:

    We are not able to route buses so that all children can board the bus on the door side.

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  • Our neighborhood has no sidewalks and has hills and curves. Can we have an additional bus stop?

    Posted by:

    With the large number of streets and bus stops in our school district, it is necessary for some students to walk on roads that have hills, curves and/or no sidewalks. For any concerns, please fill out a "Bus Stop Change Request" form to have an area reviewed.

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  • My child carries a large musical instrument; can we have the stop closer to our home?

    Posted by:

    Generally, bus stops are centrally located for all students. Bus stops are not changed to accommodate one or more students because that may displace other students further from their home. A central bus stop is necessary because other students may begin riding the bus or new families may move into the neighborhood. It is the responsibility of the parent to ensure that their child arrives safely at the bus stop.

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  • I own a daycare and need the stop at my house. Why can't the bus stop be located at my house?

    Posted by:

    As noted above, bus stops are centrally located. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the daycare provider to get the students to the bus stop.

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  • I have young children at home and/or I leave home because of work.

    Posted by:

    In order to be consistent and fair in placement of bus stops, the school district is not able to establish stops based on personal circumstances.

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  • Can my child ride home with a friend?

    Posted by:

    No. For their safety, students can only ride their assigned bus. Drivers are not allowed to accept notes from students or parents.

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  • What should I do if the bus doesn't show up?

    Posted by:

    Pick-up and drop-off times will not vary to any great extent on a normal basis after the first two weeks of school. Circumstances beyond control could make the bus late occasionally. Vehicle break downs, impassable roads, emergencies or drivers becoming ill are just a few reasons that could make the bus late. We will always make sure a bus will be at your stop. If the wait is longer than fifteen minutes please contact transportation at 320 253-9370.

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  • What is the maximum length of time for a bus route?

    Posted by:

    We strive to establish route times so that no student will ride the bus for more than one hour one way. Unfortunately we cannot always guarantee this will happen all the time.

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  • Can my child be bused across district lines or school boundaries for daycare?

    Posted by:

    Transportation across district lines or school borderlines is not permitted. Route timing, distances, and bus capacities make it impossible to accommodate this type of request. The child's parent would be responsible for transportation arrangements.

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  • My child goes to a daycare, can they get busing to/from the daycare?

    Posted by:

    Yes, as long as the daycare is located inside that schools attendance and geographical bussing area. Students would need to always be picked up in the same location and also dropped off in the same location. The pick-up and drop-off locations may be different from each other, but need to be the same location each day.

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  • My child attends daycare in an area that is eligible for transportation. Can my child get busing?

    Posted by:

    The student would be allowed to ride to and from the daycare. Please fill out a "Child Care Transportation Request" form and return to the Transportation Dept. It needs to be the same place every day.

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  • What's allowed on a bus?

    Posted by:

    Questions arise from time to time about what students may bring with them on the school bus. The Transportation Department tries to accommodate student's needs whenever possible. The department's rule of thumb is that students may bring items such as musical instruments that they can hold on their laps or between their legs during the bus ride. Objects like toys may be carried on the bus only if they are kept in a student's backpack and are not brought out during the ride to or from school.

    Some objects are never allowed on the route buses. These objects include:

    Guns (including play guns)
    Knives or other sharp objects
    Gasoline engines or cans
    Animals, insects or fish
    Matches, lighters
    Glass items, aerosol products
    Laser pens
    Skis, ski poles, hockey sticks
    Skateboards, scooters
    Golf clubs, lacrosse sticks, baseball bats
    Balloons
    Any items of dangerous or objectionable nature determined by the Transportation Department.

    The goal is for students to have a safe and respectful ride to and from school. 

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  • Why do some buses look empty?

    Posted by:

    Transportation Services makes every effort to fully maximize bus capacities. On occasion, buses may not be fully utilized due to the nature of the transportation. Special Education, ELL and some kindergarten schedules are not fully utilized due to distances, timing and program needs.

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  • What happens if my child looses something on the bus?

    Posted by:

    Drivers inspect the interior of the bus after each route. Drivers are instructed to keep all found articles of unknown origin on board the bus at least one day. Articles may be claimed directly from the driver or you may contact the district bus garage or the bus contractor's office of the bus service your child rides. Unclaimed articles are kept in our "lost and found" for a few weeks.

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  • Are seat belts required on school buses?

    Posted by:

    Seat belts on school buses are not required equipment. School buses utilize the "compartmentalization" concept to insure student safety. Since the mid-70's the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has determined that this approach to student safety is the most practical for school buses. Compartmentalization is an arrangement whereby seats are placed close together to absorb the energy of a child's body thrown against it. Additional padding, higher seat backs, frame construction, and anchoring requirements make compartmentalization the accepted choice of and the industry standard.

    Efforts are currently underway to revisit the seat belt issued on a national scale. Testing is currently being done to determine what the next generation of "child restraints" for school buses might be. The outcome of this testing will be reported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration before determining if viable options exist and are necessary for changes.

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  • I have a concern/complaint about a bus driver or what is happening on the bus. Who do I talk to?

    Posted by:

    Please call the Transportation Office at 320 253-9370 between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. daily. If it is a contractor's bus, you can call them directly at:

    District Buses (PS) 320-253-9370
    Guardian School Bus Company 320-259-8225
    Spanier Bus Service 320-251-3313
    Trobec Bus Service 320-251-1202
    Voigt School Bus Service 320-253-0510

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  • My child is a Special Education student. Who do I contact to arrange transportation?

    Posted by:

    Please contact the school that the child will be attending.

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  • My child uses special transportation, can his/her sibling ride with my child?

    Posted by:

    Although it is not the usual practice of District 742 to allow siblings of students with special transportation needs to ride along in special transportation vehicles, the transportation supervisor or designee will consider special requests from parents for this option based on the following guidelines:

    Sibling must be enrolled in the same school.
    There must be adequate seating space available on the vehicle (this may change during the year).
    Any behavior related incident reports received for the sibling may result in the termination of the option of a sibling ride along.
    The district maintains the right to discontinue this procedure based on District needs.

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  • Do you need a special license to drive a school bus?

    Posted by:

    Yes, all drivers are required to maintain in good standing a class B commercial drivers license (CDL) with a School Bus and Passenger endorsements. All drivers are subject to drug and alcohol testing. They also need to pass a physical every two years. Drivers receive 30-40 hours of initial training and 8 hours annual training during the year.

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  • Do students practice emergency evacuations from the school bus?

    Posted by:

    Yes, by law it is required on an annual basis that students grades K-10 be instructed in the proper way to evacuate a school bus in an emergency situation. Drills are performed on each route in the early fall of each school year. Drivers are trained in the proper use of emergency exits and procedures.

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