School Bus Driver Job Description: Top Duties and Requirements

A School Bus Driver operates a bus to transport children to and from school, or on school-related excursions. Their main duties are to transport children, maintain their safety, and assist all passengers with special needs entering or exiting the bus.

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School Bus Driver duties and responsibilities

A School Bus Driver has many duties outside of driving the bus. Some of the daily requirements of a School Bus Driver include:

  • Helping load and unload equipment, schoolbags, suitcases, or other cargo belonging to each passenger into and from the storage area
  • Ensuring all students comply with safety regulations
  • Driving safely and respecting all bus safety guidelines
  • Communicating with schools and transportation services, as needed 
  • Rendering first aid in the event of an emergency on board the bus
  • Regularly inspecting the bus for the upkeep and maintenance of seats, heating, and other equipment
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What does a School Bus Driver do?

A School Bus Driver transports children to and from school, or during field trips. They ensure all students get on and off the bus safely and arrive safely at their destination. They are required to assist any passengers with disabilities to enter and exit the bus safely. Additionally, they are required to maintain a safe environment throughout the journey. This includes making sure the students are not causing harm to one another and are abiding by all safety rules put in place by the bus service or school board. The School Bus Driver also has the responsibility of intervening in difficult situations, such as bullying incidents, while the children are in their care.

School Bus Driver skills and qualifications

Being a School Bus Driver is a challenging job. Some of the important skills and qualifications to look for in a successful candidate include:

  • Ability to load and unload cargo of varying weight
  • Excellent driving skills with a clean record
  • Knowledge of safety regulations
  • Ability to use a GPS
  • Outstanding communication skills
  • Good problem-solving skills
  • Required licence to operate a school bus

School Bus Driver experience requirements

A successful School Bus Driver candidate generally does not need experience as a bus driver. They do need a valid School Bus Driver’s licence and a clean driving record. School Bus Driver licences vary, depending on the province or the vehicle being driven. 

School Bus Driver education and training requirements

A good candidate for a School Bus Driver job will have a secondary school diploma and appropriate driver’s licence. In Ontario, eligible candidates must have a Class B, C, E or F licence, while In Quebec, a School Bus Driver must also receive Motor Bus Driver certification from the Société de l’assurance d’automobile du Québec. Some positions may also require a School Bus Driver to hold a certificate of completion of a three-year Certified Professional Bus Operator (CPBO) training course.

School Bus Driver salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average School Bus Driver in Canada earns $20.73 per hour. Rates will vary based on geographical location, type of transportation service needed, and level of experience. Drivers with extra certifications earn more than drivers without accreditation.

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School Bus Driver job description FAQs

What is the difference between a School Bus Driver and a Bus Driver?

A School Bus Driver works directly with the schools or school boards to arrange for pickup from one a designated spot to another. A School Bus Driver is also required to ensure students are safely picked up from their after-school drop off location. A Bus Driver, on the other hand, may operate any other type of bus, like a city bus, tour bus, or commuter bus, and they may work in the public or private sectors.

What qualities make a good School Bus Driver?

Because a School Bus Driver is responsible for the safety of children and must also supervise them, they will have the qualities necessary to work with children. A School Bus Driver is patient, kind, helpful, resourceful, a good communicator, and devoted to safety.

What makes a good School Bus Driver job description?

A good job description will be detailed, clear, and concise. Good job descriptions include specific information regarding the type of bus to be driven, the types of passengers, the general area of the bus routes and the licence requirements necessary. The mention of a competitive salary and additional employee benefits will also help attract qualified candidates.

Who does a School Bus Driver report to?

When working as a representative of a private company the School Bus Driver works for, they report back to the management team of the transportation company. If they are employed directly by the school or school board, then they report to the school’s administration.

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