Information provided by - http://www.state.nj.us/education/genfo/faq/faq_transportation.shtml
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Who must be transported?
A. In accordance with state law, N.J.S.A. 18A:39-1, all public elementary school students (grades K-8) who live more than two miles from their school and all public secondary school students (grades 9-12) who live more than two-and-a-half miles from their school are entitled to transportation. These students are said to live "remote from school." Whenever a school district is required to provide transportation to students attending regular public school programs, students attending nonpublic schools who meet those distance requirements may also be entitled to transportation services. In addition, any student classified with special needs who either meets these distance requirements or for whom transportation is required in the student's Individual Education Plan must be transported.
Q. How is the distance between a student's home and school measured?
A. Measurement is made by the shortest distance along public roadways or walkways between the entrance to the student's home and the nearest public entrance of the school building. This measurement is for eligibility purposes only and is not necessarily the travel path to or from school.
Q. Are there any limits on nonpublic school transportation?
Yes, there are several limits on nonpublic school transportation. They are:
- The school must be a nonprofit school;
- The school must be located within the state
- The school may be located no more than twenty miles from the student's home
- The cost of the transportation may not exceed the annual maximum expenditure set by law each year
- Students must be in grades kindergarten through grade 12
- Students must meet the entrance age requirements for students in the resident public school district
Q. Is it a district's responsibility to provide transportation for students who live less than remote from school when hazardous road conditions exist?
A. Boards of education are not required by law to provide busing for students who live less than remote from school even for safety reasons. However, boards are permitted, at their own discretion and expense, to provide transportation for students who reside less than remote from school and may charge the student's parents or legal guardians for this service. Municipalities may also contract with boards of education for this service and charge the parents. This transportation service is called Subscription Busing.
Q. Who is responsible for safe travel along public roadways or walkways?
A. Case law has long held that safety along public roadways and walkways is a municipal responsibility. It is for this reason that municipalities install sidewalks, traffic signals and signs, and paint crosswalks. Pursuant to section 40A:9-154.1 of New Jersey statute, school crossing guards are appointed by the municipality and are under the supervision of the chief of police or other chief law enforcement officer.
Q. Are school buses required to be equipped with passenger seat belts?
A. All vehicles manufactured after October 1992 are required to be equipped with lap-type seat belts or other child restraint systems.
Q. What is being done to ensure that students are safely transported to and from school?
A. School buses are inspected at least twice each year by special school bus inspection teams from the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission.
School bus drivers are required to hold a commercial driver's license (CDL) with a passenger and school bus endorsement, and, therefore, are also required to meet federal standards for alcohol and drug testing. The standards include testing upon initial employment followed by random tests. In addition, school bus drivers must undergo a physical examination every two years, a criminal background check upon initial employment and at the time of renewal of their CDL, and submit an annual driver's abstract (i.e., a history of motor vehicle violations).