Bus routes are listed in the Daily Courier and posted on the school district website in mid-August each school year. Additionally, you can call your child’s school for additional clarification.
Why can’t the bus stop at my house?
Bus stops are centrally located for all students. In most cases we try to use intersections which are easy to locate and where motorists are more alert to pedestrians. The District attempts to keep the number of stops minimized thus keeping the buses moving and reducing ride times. Stopping at every driveway inconveniences the motoring public causing them to become impatient trying to get around the bus and compromising safety.
Can’t the stop be closer?
Unfortunately not everyone will be able to see the stop from their house. We transport over 5,000 public school students each day. It is not feasible to put all the stops in sight range. Parents must use good judgment by either going to the stop with the child or working with other families in the area to support safety.
What to do when your child does not arrive at the stop?
First, stay calm. Occasionally, for various reasons, children may still be at school, on a different bus, or remained on the bus. Contact your child’s school to inform them.
Is it possible to transport my child to or from a daycare rather than my home stop?
This is possible; however, it is governed by several rules. The daycare must be within the attendance area of the school being serviced. The buses will not travel outside the attendance border for childcare purposes. The daycare you are using should provide a list of students to our department. Additionally, it is important that your child know where they are going each day if it is a part-time service. Drivers cannot be responsible for knowing your child’s schedule.
What should I do if I move during the school year?
It is important that you make any address changes immediately after moving to a new location within the District. CHANGE OF ADDRESS SHOULD BE MADE AS SOON AS POSSIBLE SO YOUR CHILD'S TRANSPORTATION NEEDS CAN BE UPDATED.
Why does my child have a seat assignment?
Seat assignments are a positive way for the ride to be consistent and safe. The driver or the school may institute seat assignments. This aids the driver with discipline and learning each student's name.
Why can't my child get off wherever he/she wants in the afternoon?
School district policy require a note, signed by the parent and school principal, to alter the destination of students. The note will be given first to the school, then to the driver. This allows the drivers to focus on driving and safety instead of having to decide whether the student should be allowed to change their routing and get off with a friend or ride to a different neighborhood. This should be the decision of the parent. The driver has no other way to verify the parent has made this decision. This policy avoids confusion and the chance of students getting lost.
How can my child ride home on another bus?
We discourage this from happening. Requests if absolutely necessary should be for childcare requirements only. Additional students riding cause disturbances in seat assignments and may create crowding issues. Students are required to have a note signed by the parent, school principal and must be presented to the bus driver.
If the bus does not arrive, how long should my child wait at the bus stop?
Students should wait a minimum of 30 minutes before leaving the stop area. Use good judgment based on weather conditions.
Why is my child's bus late?
Weather, traffic, road construction, driver absenteeism, maintenance difficulties and unforeseen incidents are responsible for delays in the arrival of school buses in the morning and afternoon. When a regular driver is absent, a sub driver may be driving the route. The sub driver will run the route at a slightly different speed than the regular driver. That is why it is very important to be at your bus stop ten minutes before the stop time. Drivers check buses before their routes and sometimes find mechanical problems that can cause delays and require driving another bus for that day. This can cause the bus not to be running at the normal pace. Due to the nature of transportation, exact times can never be guaranteed, but approximate times do develop over time based on normal conditions.
When the bus is running late, why don’t you call to inform the parents?
In most cases there simply is not enough time. With over fifty buses running at one time with as many as 30-70 students on each bus, it is difficult to focus on one vehicle to call 30-70 families or emergency contacts in such a short window of time. In the case of a breakdown, our focus is on getting a replacement vehicle to service the students as quickly as possible. Please know there is a bus on the way, and we will do everything humanly possible to transport your child to and from school in a timely manner every day.
Who is responsible for student behavior at bus stops?
The District is responsible to determine safe stop locations. Parents are responsible for their child's behavior at the stop. If inappropriate behavior is reported to the bus driver, they will turn this information over to the school for investigation.
Who handles discipline on the bus?
The driver is the authority figure responsible for enforcing the safe transport rules. Bus safety rules are in the student handbooks and on the District's website. Riding the bus is a “privilege” not a right. Children who misbehave jeopardize the safety of others. The driver can handle minor discipline problems speaking to students or reassigning seats. More serious issues are addressed at the school by the school principal. Misconduct forms may be submitted to the school by drivers. These may result in warning, reprimand, or removal from the bus.
Why did you suspend my child from riding the bus?
Behavioral expectations on the school bus are much like those in the classroom. Anything that jeopardizes the safety of individuals on the bus is viewed as serious. When there is an infraction, a bus incident report is turned in to the school principal, who are responsible for contacting the student and parent to solve the lack of compliance with bus expectations. The school principal is solely responsible for consequences based on the incident as described by the driver and student. Our goal is not to deny any student transportation to and from school, but we must maintain safety for all students and the driver.
How do you decide when school will be closed due to inclement weather? Who decides and how is the public notified?
Information about the closing or delaying of schools in the Connellsville Area School District, due to any emergency, is broadcast over the following television stations: KDKA, WTAE and WPXI as well as the Blackboard Connect Calling System. The decision to delay or postpone school due to weather conditions is made as early as possible. If weather conditions deteriorate while school is in session, an early dismissal may occur.
The Connellsville Area School District administration takes a team approach when making decisions about school delays and closures. That decision is based on safety first, using the best information available at the time the decision must be made. Standard sources of information may include, but are not limited to the National Weather Service, local municipal and township road crews, PennDOT, and the district administration team.
Each decision regarding inclement weather is made on a case-by-case basis, and again, safety is the primary consideration in the decision. If parents remain concerned about the safety of their children after the District’s decision is made, they are encouraged to use their own judgment and to request an excused absence for their child when necessary.
The District values parent/guardian points of concern about the safety and welfare of children. Those shared concerns are taken seriously and are taken under advisement when making future decisions regarding school delays and cancellations.