Cecil County Public Schools -
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Frequently Asked Questions
Download the FAQ pdf here
Q. How do I arrange transportation for a student?
A. You can contact the transportation department and the
placement of the stop will be reviewed. Stops are used by
multiple students and are not always ideal to everyone. We
expect that students will have to walk to stops and the stop
may not be in direct line of sight from your residence.
Sometimes there are numerous issues to be considered in
relocating a stop and we may not be successful in meeting
everyone’s expectations. We encourage parental supervision
at the bus stop
A. Cecil County Public Schools is not responsible for
student behavior at the bus stop. We assume responsibility
when the students board the bus and it ends when they exit
the bus. If there is a problem at the bus stop then you
should contact your local law enforcement agency.
A. NO, we recommend that anytime you have a concern with
something that happens on the bus that you call or talk with
your student’s school administrators. Going to the bus stop
puts everyone in a defensive position without all the
information and it can easily turn into a confrontation,
which is inappropriate for the students to witness. Drivers
are trained to try and avoid those confrontations to the
point of closing the door and driving away. Federal law
prohibits blocking the doorway or interfering with the buses
A. We make a concerted effort to be consistent on the time
we start the route. After the first stop, many things can
effect the arrival time at subsequent stops, so even the
most conscientious driver will vary by no more than a few
minutes. Students are told to be at the bus stop 10 minutes
prior to normal arrival of the bus to allow for those
variances, and to be waiting where they are visible to the
bus driver as the bus approaches the stop. Drivers are
required by law to activate their yellow lights a minimum of
100 feet prior to stopping and turning on their red lights.
If drivers do not see any students present they are not
required to stop. They are also not required to wait for
tardy students. Usually, drivers will not leave students if
they are close to the stop and making an effort to get there
as fast as they can. The loading and unloading process is
the most dangerous part of the bus ride and students are the
safest when they are at the stop before the bus arrives and
not running for it after it shows up.
A. Each bus has safety rules posted and is also provided to
parents each year in a dated pamphlet, “Parent Guide to
Student Transportation”, that is distributed to students at
the beginning of the school year. Student violation of these
safety rules can result in verbal warnings, seat
reassignment, or a loss of riding privilege. If the student
has been previously warned or the violation is serious, the
student’s riding privileges can be revoked at the end of the
afternoon run. There is a “Bus Suspension” form that the
driver must complete and that form must be turned in to the
school administration by 9:30 a.m. the following school day.
The driver should provide that form to the student when they
are dropped off, depending on circumstances, but the student
may be verbally told that afternoon that they are suspended
from the bus for the following day. Some elementary schools
have a local school procedure that the bus suspension is
delayed one school day to make sure the parents are aware
and can make arrangements. The “Bus Suspension” form that
was used last year is being replaced with a “Bus
Disciplinary Referral”. This redesigned form will be used
with the start of the 2005-2006 school year. The intent is
to provide better communication by documenting action taken
by the driver and administration. We ask all parents to
support safe bus behavior by providing consequences to
support safety when the students riding privilege has been
suspended. While at our website please review “Student
Conduct” for more detailed information.
A. The school administration is responsible for overseeing
student bus behavior issues. The driver’s authority to
suspend a student’s riding privilege is limited to ONE DAY.
Additional consequences, including additional days of bus
suspension, are handled by the school administration.
Drivers report directly to school administrators and the
school administration is responsible for investigating the
incident by talking with other students on the bus. The
Transportation Department is involved when the driver does
not follow procedures.
A. School bus transportation is the safest form of travel in
the United States with over 24 million students transported
daily nationwide on 450,000 buses traveling over 4.3 billion
miles per year. Over a 10-year period, only 1/3 of 1 percent
of all fatal crashes involved a student on a school bus.
School bus safety is based on closely spaced and padded
seats on a large farmed vehicle that is mandated by Federal
Law. The State of Maryland has additional requirements
including a limit on the life of the vehicle. The National
Traffic Highway Safety Administration tests have shown that
lap belts only (which is what New York, New Jersey, and
Florida have on their buses) would kill or injure more than
they would save. Usually, when a fatality occurs on a school
bus, it is when another large vehicle (dump truck, tractor
trailer, or train) collides with a school bus and the victim
was sitting at the point of impact. Nationwide statistics
indicate that your child is 63 times safer inside the school
bus than going to school in your car.
A. You can look at “Employment Opportunities” to see all of
the steps that a bus driver goes through before they are
allowed to drive. Briefly, they are fingerprinted, a
criminal background check is initiated, their driver’s
license is reviewed, references are checked, a drug test is
conducted (including pre-employment and random testing), a
DOT Physical is obtained, and new drivers are required to go
through 30-plus hours of training.
A. Cecil County has a contract with AccuWeather to provide a
forecasting service for winter weather events that can be
accessed 24 hours a day for up-to-the minute updates. We
also temper that with forecasts from the National Weather
Service. Based on the forecast and the timing of the
inclement weather event we make a recommendation to the
Superintendent about 5:00 AM. We have to make the decision
at that time to allow communication to TV and radio stations
for the information to be on the air before 6:00 a.m. That
recommendation is based on actual observation of road
conditions by Transportation Department staff, communication
with State Highway Administration, County Roads, Maryland
State Police, and Cecil County Sheriff’s office. Decisions
to close or delay the school day can also be
A. In the student calendar there is a list of TV and radio
stations that we contact after the Superintendent makes the
decision at 5:00 a.m. to close or delay the school day.
After the Superintendent makes that decision, radio and TV
stations are contacted for announcements to be made by 6
a.m. Other radio stations pick up that information off the
national wire service. We also communicate with an
organization called www.schools-out.com on the Internet. You
can logon and sign up for e-mail notification of any delay,
closure, or unscheduled early dismissal.
A. On the Home Page, below the Supervisor’s message is an email link. You can click on the link and send and email or you can call at 410-996-5420.