The Phelps-Clifton Springs Central School District will provide transportation to all students who attend in-person instruction. Students that are homeless, in foster care, attend non-public schools or have any other circumstances will be also be offered transportation. The District will encourage families to transport their child/children to school if possible, to help reduce the number of students on a bus.
School Bus Mandatory Requirements:
- The District will require all students and staff to wear masks upon entering, exiting, or while riding the school bus. The District will have masks on each bus for students and staff that do not have their own personal mask.
- The District will initially reduce the passenger load to maintain social distancing to allow for students to be seated one per seat. This seating arrangement results in approximately 22 students per 65-passenger bus and 27 students per 81-passenger bus. Students that reside in the same household will be permitted to be seated together, which will allow for a larger number of students to ride each bus. If student(s) are unable to medically tolerate a face covering, accommodations will be made in seating arrangements so that a student without a mask is socially distanced by six feet from other students. Wheelchair school buses will be configured to ensure social distancing of six feet.
- The District will optimize air flow on the buses by keeping the windows and roof hatches open when the weather conditions will allow. The District will have bus drivers clean high contact areas on buses in- between (new group of students), the buses will be also be cleaned and disinfected at the end of each day.
- The District will not allow hand sanitizer products on the bus, as hand sanitizer is a highly combustible product. Eating and drinking on the bus is prohibited. There will be signage at the workplace for employees and families will receive written communication regarding any non-allowable material and practices not allowed on a school bus (eating and drinking).
School Bus Staff Mandatory Requirements:
- The District will require employees to perform a self-health assessment for symptoms of COVID-19 before arriving to work. Employees will be provided with a mechanism to report their health assessment remotely before reporting to work. Employees will be directed that if they are experiencing any of the symptoms of COVID-19 they should notify the District immediately and seek medical attention.
- The District will require that all employees, including, bus drivers, monitors, attendants, and mechanics to wear a face covering. Employees may also opt to wear a face shield, which can be worn only in conjunction with a mask. Employees that have direct contact with students will be required to wear gloves, which will be made available on the buses.
- The District will provide mandatory training, prior to the academic year, to transportation staff (drivers, monitors, attendants, mechanics, and cleaners) on the proper use of personal protective equipment and the signs and symptoms of COVID-19. The District will also provide periodic refreshers or updated training when necessary.
- The District will have signage that offers reminders and guidance on using personal protective equipment and the importance of social distancing. The District has installed hand sanitizer stations in main offices, break rooms, and the mechanics bay for employee use. Transportation staff will be encouraged to wash hands before and after their runs.
Students on Transportation Mandatory Requirements:
- The District will require parents/guardians to ensure that their child/children are not experiencing any signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and do not have a fever of 100 degrees or more prior to them boarding their bus.
- All students are required to wear a mask on a school bus. If a student is medically unable to wear a mask the student will be seated so that they are socially distanced from other students by six feet. In addition, students with disabilities that prevent them from wearing a mask will not be required to wear a mask. Masks will be made available by the District on the bus for students who do not have a mask. The District will not deny transportation to any student that does not have a mask. Unmasked students will be socially distanced from other students by six feet.
- The District will develop procedures for the loading of students at bus stops so that social distancing is practiced. Loading and drop-off routines will encompass a staggered schedule providing for the most social distancing of students. Families of all students will be provided with information on ensuring their child/children are socially distancing while waiting at a bus stop, embarking/disembarking the bus. The District anticipates that this will increase the time required to load and unload buses in the morning and afternoon.
Pupil Transportation Routing Mandatory Requirements
- The District will provide pupil transportation to nonpublic, parochial, private, charter schools or students whose Individualized Education Plans have placed them out of district whose schools are meeting in in-person sessions when/if the district is not.
- The District recognizes that all students are entitled to transportation by the district to the extent required by law. The District cannot deny transportation for children who are in foster care, homeless or attend private or charter schools. The District will waive the due date for private and parochial transportation request form for the 2020-2021 school year.
- Guidance documents from the Department of Health, including Interim Guidance for Public Transportation Activities, and New York State Education Department have been incorporated into the structure and responses of the Phelps-Clifton Springs CSD Transportation Plan.