The Safety and Training department is responsible for recruiting the most suitable employees for school bus drivers. Recruitment is followed by instruction and training to ensure the employees will satisfactorily perform their duties in the manner expected. Under the umbrella of Safety and Training are the following areas of responsibility:
We provide new applicants with forty hours of initial classroom instruction, which is twenty eight hours more than the twelve hours the Georgia Department of Education requires. The initial training includes Georgia laws for school bus operation, student behavior management, first aid, and other topics related to school bus operation and safety.
Our field trainers are certified by the Georgia Department of Education. They are trained to instruct, demonstrate, and evaluate behind the wheel training skills. Field trainers provide a minimum of thirty-two supervised hours of behind the wheel training for new applicants, which are twenty hours more than the twelve hours required by the Georgia Department of Education.
All accidents are reported to the Safety and Training department for investigation. Accident data is computed and analyzed for future training opportunities. The safety and training team is also responsible for retraining drivers that have preventable accidents.
According to federal law, school bus drivers shall be subject to the following drug and alcohol testing requirements: pre-employment and pre-duty, reasonable suspicion, random, and return to duty and follow up testing. Any school bus driver who refuses to submit to a postaccident, random, reasonable suspicion, or follow up test shall not perform or continue to perform safety-sensitive functions. This law is designed to prevent accidents and injuries resulting from alcohol or drug use.
The Georgia DOE Department of Pupil Transportation assists local school districts in their efforts to provide safe and efficient transportation for students to and from school and school related activities. The department provides assistance in the areas of driver training, funding, equipment specifications and purchases, interpretation of State and Federal laws and regulations, and routing. He is a link to the school bus driver training manual and school bus inspection checklist.