SPRINGFIELD, Mo- Springfield Public Schools released its back-to-school plan last week, and for those opting to go with the in-person option, they will see some new school bus requirements.
SPS Director of Transportation, Jonathan Shelden, says these are the new safety requirements for school buses:
- Students and drivers are required to wear masks unless they have medical issues
- Loading from back to front, dismissing from front to back
- All seats can be filled, two per seat if necessary
- Siblings sit together
- Seats will be assigned per bus run
- Limiting the number of students per bus stop to 10 kids
- Traveling with windows partially down for airflow, weather permitting
- Staff disinfecting between bus runs
- Hand sanitizer will be provided on routes
“It’s going to look a little different,” says Shelden.
Shelden says drivers will disinfect high touch areas between bus runs, and when the buses return to the bus lot, the drivers will use electrostatic sprayers.
“This is the electrostatic spray gun that we use to disinfect the bus. This just mists the bus. Depending on the product that we’re using, the kill time is generally anywhere between one to two minutes to 10 minutes with about that same amount of sit time,” says Shelden.
Each school bus is equipped with a bag of health supplies, including:
- Extra face masks
- Disinfecting wipes
He says the district is actively working on bus routes for students for the fall based on transportation surveys for SPS parents to fill out.
“Families have this week up through Friday, July 31st to register for transportation if their student is going to be in seated courses this fall and if they are opting to ride the bus and the student is bus eligible,” says Shelden.
Shelden says all bus drivers for the district have gone through training to adjust to the drivers’ new bus safety requirements and health requirements. He says during the summer school season, both students and drivers have been following the safety guidelines.