School bus safety protocols

We are looking forward to seeing our students as they head back to school in a couple of weeks! As part of SD83’s efforts to maintain safety during COVID-19, we want to keep parents/guardians informed on safety protocols SD83 has implemented in conjunction with the Ministry to keep our students and staff safe on our school buses.

Busing information post cards have all gone out.  Parents of bus students are asked to please call or email the SD83 Transportation Department (250-832-9415 or email operations@sd83.bc.ca) if:

  • your child will no longer be riding the bus to school starting on September 10; or
  • if you have not received a post card for your bus student by September 3rd, 2020. 

Also, just to make people aware, your child’s school bus driver has the option to wear a mask while driving their bus as well as a face shield/safety glasses when the bus is stopped. Please talk to your child about this change in their bus driver’s attire.

Below are instructions from our Health and Safety plan for students to safely ride their school bus during COVID-19:

1. Students who are sick will need to be kept home. Students who develop symptoms while at school will not be permitted to return home on a school bus and should be picked up by a parent or guardian. We are not able to transport students who are ill or showing symptoms.

2. Parents will be responsible for their child’s safety at the bus stop. Parents must remain with their child K-5 until the bus departs in the morning.

3. To ensure that your child is as safe as possible, please review safety procedures before riding the bus:

  • Line up with limited contact when waiting for the schools bus.
  • Always follow the driver’s instructions.
  • When loading onto the bus, go to the furthest available seat unless the driver instructs otherwise.
  • When unloading the bus, wait until the seat in front has moved before you get up to go, ensure physical distancing is observed.
  • When space is available students will be seated in the window seat away from the aisle.
  • When possible bus routes will utilize a strict seating plan that reflects cohort and family groupings.
  • No eating or drinking (except water) on the school bus.

4. School Buses will not be accepting unregistered riders which includes after-school friends coming home with a bus student. Alternate transportation will need to be arranged in those cases.

5. Students in Grades 6-12 will be required to wear masks while riding the school bus as directed by the Ministry of Education.

6. Your child will receive an updated ‘Procedure and Code of Conduct for Bus Students’ form from their bus driver. Please review front and back of form with your child and return the signed bottom portion to the bus driver as soon as possible.

In order to keep students and staff as safe as possible, we will require bus students to follow the above rules very closely to avoid the risk of losing their busing privileges. We appreciate your cooperation in keeping everyone safe.

As this is an ever changing environment, Ministry requirements may change SD83 protocols as the school year progresses. Thanks for your assistance in helping our students be comfortable and safe!