Illinois Central School Bus - 309-828-4373
Safety Tips for Parents
1. When students must cross the road to get to their destination, the driver should direct the students. Please do not confuse students by directing them to cross behind a bus or without the driver’s signal.
2. Students should wait on the sidewalk or curb until the bus comes to a complete stop.
3. All book bags and personal items should fit on the student’s lap.
4. Students should NEVER pick up items dropped near a stopped bus.
5. Large items such as school projects, balloons, musical instruments and large bags with wheels are encouraged to be transported to school by parents. At times, space is not available for large or heavy items and they may pose a hazard by blocking emergency exits.
6. Loose items become projectiles in a collision or sudden stop. Students should keep pencils and other items in their book bags.
7. Never “chase” the bus in your car if the student did not arrive at the assigned stop on time. The driver may not see a child coming from behind the bus.
Rules for Riding the Bus
Student behavior on the bus is generally the same as expected in the classroom. The primary focus for having rules while riding the bus is to ensure the safety of everyone aboard the bus. In order to maintain that safety, students are to:
1. Remain seated and facing the front of the bus.
2. Keep arms and legs out of the aisle and inside the window.
3. Talk quietly and courteously while on the bus.
4. Keep personal belongings under control and at assigned seat or where specified by the driver.
5. Refrain from any behavior that could be a distraction to other riders or the driver.
6. Keep hands and feet to yourself.
Eating, drinking or smoking is not permitted on the bus. Animals or any objects that may cause a potential danger to anyone are not permitted on the bus.
The driver may report students who refuse to follow the bus behavior rules to the school office for disciplinary action. Discipline is enforced to provide a safe ride to and from school. Generally, the following procedures will be used in disciplining a student after the driver has taken steps to correct the problem on the bus.
FIRST OFFENSE: A bus report will be written and the student will be called to the school office to meet with the principal. This will include a reprimand for the offense and possible detention. A copy of the bus report will be provided to the parent or guardian.
SECOND OFFENSE: The student will be called to the office for a meeting with the principal. The parents will be notified and the student may be given up to five (5) days of detention. A copy of the bus report will be provided to the parent or guardian.
THIRD OFFENSE: The student and parents may be required to attend a meeting with the principal. The student may be suspended from the bus for up to five (5) days. A copy of the report will be provided to the parent or guardian.
FOURTH OFFENSE: The student and parent or guardian will be required to attend a meeting with the principal. The student will be suspended from the bus for up to ten (10) days. A copy of the report will be provided to the parents.
For special-education students, a building-level intervention meeting may be held at any point during these procedures to discuss possible intervention or accommodations. Any behavior plan that is implemented will be communicated to the parents or guardians and the bus driver. If behavior problems continue, an IEP meeting to address transportation issues will be scheduled. Participants will include parents or guardians, teachers, principals, Central Illinois School Bus representative, and other appropriate individuals. At the IEP meeting, a bus plan will be put together and implemented. The case manager will be responsible to monitor and plan meetings to revise the plan as appropriate.
IN CASES OF EXTREME MISBEHAVIOR, THE PRINCIPAL HAS THE RIGHT TO DETERMINE AN APPROPRIATE LEVEL OF DISCIPLINE.
In the event school is cancelled or dismissed early for any reason, parents will be contacted through School Reach. Also, please listen to WJBC (1230 AM) for details. Parents are strongly encouraged to have an emergency plan in place in the event school is cancelled or dismissed early in an emergency.
Frequently Asked Questions about Bus Transportation
Illinois Central School Bus provides transportation for District 87 students. Any specific questions about the bus company, it’s vehicles or employees should be directed to the Manager of Illinois Central School Bus at 828-4373. Any questions about your child’s bus stop, bus route or transportation eligibility should be directed to the school that your child attends. District 87 and Illinois Central School Bus operate a tiered routing system. This enables one bus to serve more than one school and maximizes the efficiency of the bus fleet by using as few buses as possible. Each regular education bus can run a high school route, a junior high school route and an elementary school route because of the staggered bell times.
1. I can’t see my child’s bus stop from my house. How can I get the bus stop moved closer?
Bus stops are placed at centralized locations in order to safely serve as many students as possible; this minimizes the time length of the route and also ensures safety. Students are safer waiting for the bus as part of a group; also, minimizing the number of times the bus must stop to load or unload students reduces the chance of an injury or collision. Students may be required to walk up to one mile to a bus stop if no state-declared hazards are present. Parents are encouraged to work together to provide supervision at assigned school bus stops.
2. The bus didn’t show up on time for my child. How long should he/she wait at the stop?
Your child should be waiting for the bus at the assigned stop at least five minutes prior to the scheduled stop time. If the bus is late, the child should remain at the stop. The bus may have had mechanical problems and is running late. There may have been a road closure or other incident earlier in the route. The may be a substitute driver on the route. Substitute drivers should be expected to take longer to drive a route than the regular driver, they are not as familiar with the students as the regular driver and must take extra care to avoid an injury or collision. Regardless of the delay, a bus will stop at every assigned stop. If after 30 minutes your bus does not arrive, call Illinois Central School Bus at 828-4373.
3. My child goes to a daycare provider in an area with bus service. May my child ride the bus?
If your child goes to a daycare provider within the boundaries of the school he/she attends, your child may ride on a regularly scheduled bus from that school if space is available. Transportation is not available to daycare providers outside the school attendance areas. If your child normally rides a bus to school but is going to a daycare provider within the walking area of the attendance boundaries, your child will not be provided bus transportation.
4. How can I arrange to have my pre-school or special education child picked up/dropped off at a different stop for just one day?
Unfortunately, District 87 and Illinois Central School Bus cannot honor these requests. These routes provide door-to-door service and changing the schedule for just one day would disrupt the schedules of other students on the bus. In an emergency, contact your building principal.
5. My child left something on the bus. How can we get it back?
Drivers check their buses after every run. Items left by students are usually held on the bus for several days for retrieval. Fragile items or items with obvious monetary value (electronic devices, wallets, purses, etc.) are removed from the bus and kept in the office until claimed. Unclaimed items are donated to charity at the end of the semester. Parents can help avoid lost items by labeling them with the student’s name and school.
6. My child’s bus is overcrowded. Can some children be placed on another bus?
School bus capacities are rated according to the number of elementary-aged students the bus can safely seat. The largest buses Illinois Central School Bus use in District 87 hold up to 71 elementary students (three students per seat.) Two and sometimes three junior high or high school students can safely sit in a seat; enabling the district to transport up to 50 secondary students on a bus. With a full bus, it will seem crowded but it will not be over capacity. This is one reason students should limit the number and size of their personal belongings. It is our goal to fully utilize all the space on all the buses in the fleet. For long field trips, schools are encouraged to only seat two students per seat.
7. We live within the walking area but there is a bus stop very close to our home. Can our child ride this bus anyway?
Students who live within the walking area of the school and have a designated safe walking route are not eligible to ride a bus. If there is a state-declared walking hazard that prevents your child from walking to school, then bus service is provided. For information on state declared hazards, you may contact the Educational Services Center or the school your child attends.
8. Why aren’t seatbelts required in school buses?
In 1977, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration adopted National Minimum Standards for School Buses. Among these standards was the mandated use of “compartmentalization.” This utilizes specially engineered and constructed seatbacks and barriers to absorb energy in a sudden stop or collision and thereby eliminating the need for lap belts. The seats are constructed of a fire-retardant vinyl covering, extra dense foam padding, and a steel inner structure that is designed to “give” under the force of a sudden stop or collision.
a. Compartmentalization provides passive crash protection; no additional action is required by students or adults to activate this safety measure.
b. There is not enough space available to arrange three sets of lap belts safely in an existing bus seat. The only way lap belts could be installed in existing buses would be to reduce the student capacity of each bus.
c. Lap belts have been shown to cause injury to the abdomens of young students; younger students would require harnesses and other special equipment in addition to a lap belt.
d. Lap belts would increase the time needed to evacuate a bus; students could be trapped in a dangerous situation if belted in, particularly if the bus was overturned.
Several of Illinois Central School Bus' buses are specially equipped to handle lap belts. These belts are used in conjunction with harnesses and car seats to transport pre-school aged students and students with special physical needs.
9. Why aren’t monitors used on all buses?
Monitors are used on buses that transport pre-school aged students and students with special needs. Monitors are not used on regular route buses. To aid drivers and principals in supervising students, video cameras are used on many of the district’s 45 buses.
10. Why aren’t buses always available for field trips?
The first priority of District 87 and Illinois Central School Bus is to provide transportation from home to school in the morning and from school to home when the school day is finished. There are only enough buses and drivers available to accomplish this task on a daily basis, with several buses in reserve for emergencies. When buses are not in use for normal school routes, they are available for field trips; this is generally between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. and again after 4 p.m. Frequently, the demand for field trips during route times outnumbers the drivers and buses available.