Important Reminders and Frequently Asked Questions

 What should I do if the bus is late?

Please be patient if the bus is late. There are many reasons why your bus may be running later than usual. Weather, traffic or mechanical problems can cause your bus to be late. If your bus is running more than 15 minutes later than it should, contact the Royal Coach office at 914-733-3005 and they will advise you on the status of your bus.

 

What should I do if my child misses the school bus?

If your child misses the bus because he/she was not at the bus stop on time, you will be responsible for transporting your child.  DO NOT FOLLOW THE BUS AND ATTEMPT TO GET THE BUS TO PULL OVER WHILE IT IS ON ITS ROUTE.  It is extremely unsafe for the bus to stop along the roadway to board your child. Children walking close to the side of the bus are in danger of getting seriously hurt.

 

Why is there is a different bus and/or driver for my child today?

Due to the scheduling of bus repairs and inspections, a spare bus will fill in for your regular bus when it is in the garage. The driver should put a sign in the bus window to indicate the route number he/she is representing.  From time to time traffic incidents, road closures or mechanical trouble may also result in a spare bus being sent to perform all or part of a trip. If your driver is absent there will be a substitute driver to drive your children's bus route. At times you will see a different bus number, a different bus driver, or both.  

 

Why don’t you pick my children up in front of our house?

Board of Education Policy number 5710 states that bus stops may be established within a reasonable walking distance of up to 1 mile.  The purpose of this service is to provide safe, efficient and economical transportation in a timely manner to the students of the school district in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.

 

Who is allowed to ride the school bus during the bus route?

For the safety of the students and the bus driver, only properly registered students are allowed on the bus. Unauthorized persons, including parents, guardians, babysitters, etc are not allowed to board the bus for any reason. If necessary, law enforcement personnel will be called to the bus stop to enforce this policy.

 

What is the transportation procedure regarding children let off at the bus stop without a parent or guardian present?

Students in grades 1 through 12 will be let off at the bus stop without a parent or guardian present. Kindergarten students will not be let off the bus unless a parent, guardian or babysitter is at the stop to meet them. Your child will be returned to the school if a parent, guardian or babysitter is not at the stop to receive the kindergarten child. You or another authorized adult will be responsible for picking your child up from the school. Any student who is not comfortable exiting the bus for any reason should notify the bus driver who will return the child to school. Also, drivers are encouraged to use their judgement and return to school a student in any grade if there is a safety concern at the student’s bus stop.  

 

Do I have to stop for a stopped school bus with the red lights flashing on school grounds?

ABSOLUTELY! The most dangerous violation of passing a stopped school bus occurs on school grounds while parents and guardians are picking up or dropping off children. The law states you must come to a complete stop when approaching a stopped school bus with its red lights flashing. This includes when on school property.  

 

Am I allowed to take my child off the bus at the school after they board the bus at dismissal time?

No. For the protection of the child, you must get permission from the school's main office. A school official will escort you to the bus and tell the driver that it is all right to release the child to your custody. This may seem extreme, but given the climate of our society, we cannot be too careful when it comes to the welfare of your child.

 

What happens if there is no seat for my child?

Students should be seated with two or three persons per seat.  Backpacks and other items carried on the school bus should be placed on laps or under the seat.  Standing is not permitted on school buses. If a driver determines there are too many students on the bus, priority will be given to students who are scheduled to ride that specific bus.  Students with bus passes or those who are riding alternate buses will be asked to exit the bus and return to the school to make alternate transportation arrangements.

 

Are students required to wear seat belts on the school bus?

In New York State, seat belts are not required to be used by students riding in school buses.  School buses are constructed in such a way as to provide cushioned compartments for students in case of an emergency.  If a crash occurs, students are in a safe cushioned space between seat backs which protect the students. Compartmentalization has been the cornerstone of safe school buses for many years.  

There remains considerable industry debate over effectiveness of lap belts which are required in all school buses sold in New York State.  While the lap belts keep students in the seat compartment, they do not restrain the upper torso which can lead to various other injuries. All students are trained and encouraged to use seat belts, however, seat belt use is not required.

 

Are instruments and/or athletic equipment allowed to be transported on the school bus?

Musical instruments and athletic equipment that are small enough to fit on the student’s lap or between their legs are permitted on the school bus.  Carrying cases and/or bags should should remain closed while on the bus.

 

Is there a limit on the length of time a student may spend on a bus?

There is no statutory limit on the length of time students spend on the bus.  According to the New York State Education Department several factors are to be taken into consideration when determining if the ride time is reasonable including but not limited to the age of students, the number of schools on the route, the start times of those schools and the bus cost.  Ride times in excess of 90 minutes have been deemed "not unreasonable" by the Commissioner of Education if the circumstances warrant such a route.

 

How are bus routes and bus stops determined?

Bus stops are established to provide for an efficient and economical transportation program.  Factors used to determine a stop location include geographical area, location safety, age of students being transported, length of route, building schedules and other factors.  Bus routes are established within a reasonable walking distance not to exceed one mile from the student’s home.

 

Questions Specific to Non-Public School Transportation

 How do I arrange transportation for my student attending a non-public school?

MPCSD provides transportation to resident students attending non-public schools within 15 miles of the student’s home.  A request must be submitted no later than April 1 of the prior school year on the appropriate form located on the district transportation website or available upon request at the central office.  

 

 Are the parents of non-public school pupils required to request MPCSD to provide transportation to their children?  

Yes. Parents must submit the out of district transportation request form annually by April 1 of the preceding school year. This form is available on the district transportation website or at the district office.

 

Is MPCSD obligated in any way to notify or remind the parents of nonpublic school pupils that requests for transportation are due?

No. The law does not require public school officials to notify parents. However, we have posted the due date on the district website to inform parents.

 

Do you offer transportation to and from non-public schools for prospective students visiting a non-public school for the day?

No.  We do not offer transportation to or from non-public schools for prospective students.  Students visiting a school in which they are NOT currently enrolled must make other arrangements. Additionally, requests for changes in any student’s transportation must be made by a parent or legal guardian.