Mobility has plays an important role for school bus drivers, aids, attendants and managers when it comes to daily fleet operations. Unfortunately, the challenge of securing mobility devices is still playing a large role within the industry.
Having lived most of my adult life in the rarified air of Colorado, I am still not surprised that the Supreme Court, ruling on March 22 in the Endrew F. case, brought special educators and related services personnel “down to earth.” In fact, despite my retirement, the opinion in what advocates have called “the most significant special-education issue to reach the high court in three decades,” challenged me to think about practical implications for school transportation providers. I had predicted that if the Supremes “raised the bar” of FAPE (Free Appropriate Public Education, the cornerstone of federal law’s requirements for students with disabilities), as many predicted they would, it would not necessarily mean frantic revamping of IEP provisions relating to school transportation. In an effort to calm transportation professionals’ nerves now that any thought that offering “de minimis” educational benefits are enough has been tossed out of the window, I practically begged to write this article.
On Thursday state Sen. Tony Mendoza from California presented a replica of the school bus safety bill he introduced last year to the parents of a Whittier, Calif., teen with Autism who died after being left on a school bus on a sweltering day, according to the Whittier Daily News.
Riding the school bus is largely a privilege and not a right. Many states spell this out in their regulations. However, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) mandates the related service of transportation as a right of certain students to receive a free and appropriate education, or FAPE, based upon their needs as related in their Individualized Education Program. Likewise, Title I and the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act mandate that schools provide transportation service for low-income and at-risk students.
The need for compliance depends upon the existence of a law, regulation, rule, policy. . . in other words, “the something” with which your actions must conform.
FRISCO, Texas – After spending a year driving a special needs school bus, Craig Davidson wrote about his evolving relationship with each student who struggled physically, emotionally and socially, and how the “precious cargo” in his care changed his life.
The latest survey from School Transportation News explored the various aspects of transporting special-needs children, including wheelchair safety, fire suppression technology and the growing rate of students diagnosed with autism.