Q & A
Can my child ride another bus or get off at a stop other than their assigned home bus stop?
No. This would be considered a daycare or alternate stop request. This is available to grades K-5 only and must be 5 days a week, no exceptions. If needed, complete an alternate stop / daycare request form and return to your student’s school.
My child is staying over a friend’s house. Can they ride their friend’s bus?
No. Students must ride their assigned bus and board / disembark at their assigned bus stop. Student school bus rosters need to remain consistent for the safety of all.
Can you notify me about major bus delays?
Students are identified in the student information system with their route number. When we learn about occurrences that may cause major delays; we have the capability to send an FPS automated message to families for students on a specific route to let you know about the delay. Please make sure the school has your most up-to-date email and contact information so you can receive these messages.
Why are students asked to arrive at the bus stop five-ten minutes before the bus pickup time?
We ask students to arrive at their assigned bus stop at least five-ten minutes prior to pick up time so that they are ready and waiting for the bus to arrive. This helps to ensure a faster loading time. It also ensures that they are there in case the time on their clock or watch differs slightly from the time for the driver.
My child's bus frequently arrives later than the scheduled pickup time. What causes the delays?
Bus routes are planned to run on a fairly set schedule. If your child's bus is running behind schedule, there could be uncontrollable factors that are affecting the pickup time. Sometimes there could be traffic delays or in some instances freight trains moving through town. Sometimes children are not ready and waiting at earlier bus stops, which can cause the bus to run behind schedule on all future stops. This is another reason why we ask all children to be ready and waiting at their bus stops so we can minimize delays.
The bus didn't show up on time for my child. How long should he/she wait at the stop?
Your child should arrive at the stop at least five-ten minutes before the regular arrival time of the bus. If there is a substitute driver, the times may not be absolutely consistent with the regular times. If the bus is late ask your child to remain at the stop. Buses break down, roads are blocked, drivers become ill or have emergencies, but there will always be a bus at every stop. If the wait becomes extreme (approximately 20 minutes), please call Transportation Office at 508-626-9179.
My child's bus arrives later/earlier than I want. Can the time be changed?
All FPS buses operate on a comprehensive schedule, completing two or three routes in the morning and again in the afternoon. This helps to ensure that the system operates safely, efficiently, while working to deliver students to school on time. Because of the number of students needing transportation, and to ensure effective scheduling, the overall bus schedules cannot be adjusted to accommodate an individual request.
My child missed the bus. Can the bus come back to the bus stop?
Buses cannot return for students who missed the bus. Please be sure your child arrives at the designated bus stop at least five-ten minutes ahead of schedule.
My child missed the bus at school this afternoon. Can the bus come back?
At most schools, the drivers receive a signal from school staff when they can depart after a sufficient time has been allowed for students to exit the school to board the buses. Sometimes students are held up at school for unforeseen reasons and miss their school bus. Once buses depart the school, they are not able to return to pick up any students who have missed their buses.
I can't see my child's bus stop from my house. How can I get the bus stop moved closer?
Bus stops are placed at centralized locations that can be safely accessed by a significant number of students to minimize the time length and mileage of the run. If you have concerns about your child's safety you are encouraged to accompany your child to the bus stop or arrange a neighborhood buddy to walk with your child. Elementary children may be required to walk up to one mile to a bus stop. Secondary students may be required to walk up to one and a half miles to a bus stop. However, bus stops are typically designed to be within 1/2 of a mile for elementary students and 3/4 of a mile for middle and high school students from the residence.
The bus drives right past my house. Why can't it stop at my house?
Bus stops are placed to allow the buses easy access and egress through neighborhoods while keeping safety a priority. In addition, adding bus stops causes further delays on our bus routes and extends the students' ride time. In the end, this means that bus routes would have to start earlier in the morning to arrive to school on time. Similarly, in the afternoon it would mean students arrive home later.
Does the bus driver have the right to assign seats on the bus?
The bus driver may assign seats as he/she feels necessary to maintain order and safety on the bus.
Who should I speak to about problems that occurred on my child's bus?
If there is an issue on the bus, please contact your child's school. If you have a concern about a bus driver, route or general questions, please call the Transportation Office at 508-626-9179.
Another child is harassing or bullying my child while they are on the bus. What should I do?
Framingham Public Schools has a policy that specifically prohibits "bullying" at school, during school events and field trips, and on a school bus. The bus driver's main focus must be on operating the school bus safely. As a result, the majority of the driver's attention is focused on the road and traffic conditions, so he/she may not see or hear inappropriate behavior among the students on the bus when it occurs. Students who engage in bullying or harassing behaviors are subject to disciplinary action. Please report any problems to your child's school so that appropriate steps may be taken.
Are there consequences if a student misbehaves on the bus?
Yes. Bus drivers report problems to the student's school. Administrators follow the process outlined in the Framingham Public Schools policy for all disciplinary actions. Students may be denied transportation services by school administrators when a student's conduct represents a threat to the safe operation of the school bus, to the student, or to others on the bus. Please refer to the Framingham School Committee policy on “Student Conduct on School Buses”, file:EEAEC-R1 and file: EEAEC.
The bus driver disciplined my child on the bus today. Does the driver have the right to do this?
The school bus driver (or attendant) is responsible for the safe operation of the bus. He/she should receive the same level of respect afforded to a classroom teacher, assistant or other school employee. When necessary, drivers or attendants may correct a student. In most cases, that resolves the problem. If the misconduct continues, the driver may complete a "conduct report" to notify the school of the event for further review and, if appropriate, disciplinary action.
What is a student conduct report?
A student conduct report is used to report a student who violates the safety rules on the bus that may cause harm to the student, to another student or to the public. This includes actions that distract the bus driver's attention from the roadway. If a student conduct report is completed for a student, the school staff members will contact the student's family if they need to speak to the parent or guardian as part of the disciplinary steps taken to resolve the problem.
Can a family member or other adult board a school bus at the bus stop or at school?
The safety of the children is always our priority. It is illegal for any unauthorized individual to stop or board a school bus. Please do not attempt to board a school bus along the route or at school.
I think my child's bus is overcrowded. How many children can ride a full-sized school bus?
Large school buses are designed to carry 71 elementary students with three children per seat and 52 middle and 44 high school students with two students per seat. It is important that students place their book bags and large items or musical instruments in their laps or on the floor between their legs and the barrier in front.
Can students bring large musical instruments with them on the bus?
Musical Instruments are permitted on the school bus as long as the student can carry the instrument or object on and off of the bus by him/herself. They must be placed in the student's lap or stored between the student's legs and the barrier in front of the student. Instruments or large objects cannot block the aisle. Large instruments such as drum kits, cellos and basses are too large to be transported on school buses safely. In an accident, these items can easily become a projectile and can injure a student. If you are unsure, please check with your child's school before bringing a large musical instrument or object to the bus stop.
How do I locate a lost item on a school bus?
If a driver finds an item on the bus, he/she will hold it until the following day. The student may ask the driver if his/her item was found on the bus. If it remains unclaimed, the driver will discard the items usually after a month. If you contact the Transportation Office, please provide us with a full description of the item. Often drivers are not able to inspect buses while they are on the road and will check for lost items at their next assignment. We recommend that personal items be stored in the child's backpack to help prevent losing items. Because electronic devices such as cell phones, tablets, iPods and games are very popular, the recovery rate is very low. We recommend that students store these items in a secure place such as their backpack while traveling to and from school.
Framingham Public School buses are equipped to monitor bus activity with the use of audio and visual recordings. School Administration generally requests to review the footage when a situation has been brought to their attention. Our current vendor, Durham School Services, randomly reviews footage for employee performance evaluations.