Chapter K - Transportation (filed under Chapter E - School Operations)

Section K-2.1 Student Transportation Policy

Replaces I-6.3 Field Trip Drivers and E-8.4 Parent Drivers for School Activities


American Preparatory Academy Student Transportation Policy


The following recommendations are offered by the Utah State Board of Education and the Utah Division of Risk Management. Where conflicts exist between United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) rules and these recommendations, Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) operators are expected to abide by the stricter of the two.


1. Whenever possible, students should be transported on school buses operated by properly licensed and trained school transportation employees. The use of private, non-commercial vehicles to transport students should be viewed as a secondary option if school buses are not available. 


2. UCA 53-8-211.5 prohibits any school from using a vehicle with a seating capacity of eleven

(11) or more, including the driver, to transport students, unless the vehicle meets federal school bus safety standards under 49 U.S.C §30101, et. seq.  Schools are prohibited from transporting students in passenger vans with more than 10 seats, including any van where the manufacturer's seating capacity is eleven (11) or more.  This includes a prohibition on vans where the manufacturer’s seating capacity is eleven (11) or more, even if seats have been removed.  APA, its representatives, and others recognized and associated with the APA shall not rent, lease or otherwise contract for vehicles that do not meet this standard for the transportation of students.


3. APA will not authorize anyone under the age of 21 to transport students for school-sponsored activities.


4. Under no circumstances may students be authorized, required, or in any way encouraged by APA or its representatives, to drive other students to off-campus school classes or activities. No student may be authorized to act as an agent driver for APA. When students are required to leave their home school campus in order to attend classes or other school-related activities, schools should provide transportation to and from those classes or activities. Whenever students are expected to provide their own transportation to classes or activities, this expectation should be expressly included in the course or activity description. Parents and guardians must also be informed of this requirement prior to the commencement of the course or activity. Under no circumstances may teachers, coaches, or counselors facilitate carpools or other transportation groupings that may suggest or imply that the student driver is an agent of APA.


5. Travel in adverse or stormy weather is discouraged, especially when that travel will be made in a vehicle other than a school bus or commercial vehicle.


6. Drivers of school buses or other vehicles used to transport students shall comply with all general traffic and safety regulations and all regulations applicable to their licenses.


7. If APA utilizes minivans or large SUVs designed to carry up to seven passengers plus the driver for the transportation of students, the driver of these vehicles must successfully complete an APA-approved driver safety training program that must include actual experience operating the type of vehicle the driver will be operating. Before beginning any trip, drivers of these vehicles shall take sufficient time to familiarize themselves with all operational controls, i.e., headlights, fog lights, windshield washer and wipers, cruise control, emergency lights, etc.,


8. APA drivers must ensure all items in the vehicle are properly secured.


9. Vehicle occupants, except those in a school bus with no safety restraints, shall always use seat belts while in the vehicle. School bus drivers shall use the seat belt at all times while operating the bus. If three-point seat belts on school buses are available for students, they are expected to use them. It is the responsibility of the driver to remind students to buckle up. Drivers should follow any additional APA policies for seat belts.


10. APA drivers who drive APA vehicles must successfully complete and provide the following:

(a)   Driver Safety Training

(b)   Criminal Background Check, if transporting students

(c)    Current Driver's License; an

(d)   Motor Vehicle Record (MVR), in accordance with APA Policy.


11. APA drivers, including employees and approved volunteers, who use their personal vehicles to transport students must successfully complete and provide the following:

(a)   Driver Safety Training;

(b)   Criminal Background Check (employees)

(c)    Current Driver's License;

(d)   Proof of Auto Insurance.


12. No vehicle, other than a commercial vehicle that is used for the transportation of students, shall begin a trip between the hours of 11:00 pm and 4:30 am. Trips may start before

4:30 am if transporting students to the airport. Any trip that begins before 11:00 pm should be completed before 1:30 am. If a trip cannot be completed by 1:30 am, an overnight stay is required. This does not apply to commercial carriers.


13. Schools are strongly encouraged to utilize a School Bus, Activity Bus, or Commercial Transportation for any official, authorized transportation of students more than three hundred fifty (350) miles from the home school.


14. Schools are strongly encouraged to utilize commercial transportation for out-of-state travel.


15. School bus drivers must conform to the statutory or rule requirements and limitations on

CDL hours of service. Further, no individual who is transporting students shall work more than fifteen (15) hours in a 24-hour period. For example, a teacher shall not teach a full day of classes and afterward transport students to and from activities, sports activities, or events, if the combined amount of work time exceeds fifteen (15) hours.


16. Drivers of school buses and all other vehicles used to transport students shall comply with all United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) rules regarding the number of hours a driver may operate a vehicle, frequency of breaks, and all other applicable rules governing drive time and related matters. Drivers are encouraged to stop every three (3) hours at a minimum for a rest break.