Covid-19 Rule / Policy Updates

When in phase 4 of return to school:


  • All bus riders must wear a mask when boarding and while on the bus for the duration of the route
  • Riders will sanitize their hands when entering the school bus (touch-less hand sanitizer station located on bus stairwell as you enter)
  • Once on the bus, riders will proceed directly to their assigned seating arrangements. 
  • Bus windows will be lowered during the bus route (weather and temperature permitting)

Welcome to the Transportation Department

Onsted Community Schools bus fleet consists of 18 buses with 13 AM/PM district bus runs and one special needs bus run. The Onsted Community School District encompasses parts of seven townships. Annually the transportation department transports over 800 students (kindergarten through twelfth grade) each day. The district maintains its own bus fleet and the entire fleet is inspected annually by the Michigan State Police. All bus drivers are state certified and update their licenses with continuing ed classes. Drivers are also required to have an annual physical.

Bus Runs

Please call the transportation department for information as it relates to your student(s) bus number and approximate pickup and drop off times for the 2019-2020 school year. We do not call you individually with bus numbers and pickup and drop off information as it relates to your student(s).  The bus times and bus numbers will possibly change each year as students graduate and other students move in and out of the school district.  You may contact the Transportation Department (517) 467-7761 and we will be happy to look up your student(s) bus information as it relates to their home address and the current school year.

It is your responsibility to contact the transportation department and give updated information for the upcoming school year (i.e., ride to day care, etc.), we do not assume that information and it does not carry over to the upcoming year – you will need to notify us so your student(s) transportation information is correct.

Regarding elementary students who ride the bus – parents please remember to send a note with any bus change information throughout the school year to your student(s) teacher and also call the transportation department as well, so that the change for the day can be noted with the teacher putting the student on the correct bus and the transportation department putting a note in the bus driver’s mailbox. Communication is the key from you the parent to the classroom to the bus driver – so that all students are heading home on the appropriate bus. (STUDENTS WILL BE LIMITED TO A MAXIMUM OF TWO DIFFERENT BUS STOPS)

Delay in Morning AM Run

With regard to morning AM pick up runs – If your student(s) are waiting at their designated bus stop and the bus is more than 10-15 minutes late, please feel free to contact the bus garage (517) 467-7761 and we should be able to give you information as it relates to your bus stop, whether the bus is running late due to having to call a substitute driver, a change in bus due to a mechanical problem, or whatever the situation may be, we should be able to give you an approximate time for your student(s) AM pickup. If you call the bus garage and no one answers, that means that everyone, including the transportation supervisor is out driving an AM bus run and no one is in the office. At this point, you may want to drive your student(s) to school or make other arrangements for them to ride with someone to school.

If you do not have transportation for your student, there will be someone in the transportation office after 7:30 a.m. and they will be able to help you with questions you may have. If your students AM bus run was not able to run at the scheduled time, we will take down names of the students who still need an AM pick up. After the buses come in from their AM runs, we will send another driver out to complete the run for all student who still need a ride on the bus that did not go out on that particular morning. (This will only be done if an AM bus run did not go out and not for missing the bus). We strive to keep the bus runs running smoothly, but there are given days when unexpected delays may occur that are beyond our control. We understand that this may interrupt your morning routine, but would appreciate your understanding and help with regards to getting your student(s) to school safely.

Bus Rules

Student Rules and Regulations for School Buses

Parents - Caution your students. A bus driver that is distracted, will not be watching the road or cars around the bus. The bus is an extension of the classroom and all school rules apply on the bus. Riding the bus is a privilege.

  • Pupils must obey bus drivers promptly as they are in full charge of buses and pupils while in transit.
  • Pupils should be on time at their designated bus stop. (We suggest five minutes before designated pickup time). The bus must remain on schedule to get all the students to school on time.
  • Pupils should cross in front of a bus when crossing a highway, not in back of a bus.
  • Pupils should stay off the roadway at all times while waiting for the bus.
  • Pupils should wait until the bus has come to a complete stop before attempting to enter or leave the bus. Only the front door should be used, except in the case of an emergency.
  • Occupy seat and refrain from moving while the bus is in motion. There should be NO moving around or changing seats on the bus, except as arranged by the bus driver.
  • Pupils should keep their hands and heads inside of the bus at all times.
  • Observe classroom conduct while getting on and off the bus and riding. There should be no loud talking, but conversation in normal tones is permissible.
  • Pupils should not cause trouble by teasing, pullling hair, scuffling or using inappropriate language, etc. Fighting participants may be banned from riding the bus in the future.
  • Throwing articles of any kind in a bus is more dangerous than anything else and will not be tolerated.
  • Any pupil disfiguring or mutilating a bus will be required to pay for the damage, and may be denied further use of buses.
  • Pupils should help to keep buses clean, sanitary and orderly. Place trash in garbage receptacle when exiting the bus. Students littering on the bus may be required to sweep the bus.
  • There will be no eating, drinking or smoking on the bus at any time.
  • No dangerous items (matches, lights, weapons of any kind, etc.) should be brought on the bus.

Bus Regulations

Only regularly scheduled bus students are to ride the school buses. If for some reason a student is to ride another bus, written notification from the parent is required by noon. These notes are to be turned in to the office for approval. The building principal must approve any emergency after noon.

Frequently Asked Questions

Isn't the school district required to transport my child?

School districts are NOT required by law to transport regular education children. Michigan Compiled Law (MCL) 380.1321 outlines the obligations of the school district IF its board of education elects to provide transportation. Under Article 3 of the Revised School Code, the school district is obligated to provide for the transportation of a special education student if the Individualized Educational Planning Committee (IEPC) has determined that the transportation is a specialized service which is included within and necessary to carry out the student's IEP.

My child is starting kindergarten. Will the bus pick my child up in front of my house?

There are no special laws or regulations for transporting regular education students enrolled in kindergarten. If your district provides transportation, it will be provided in accordance with the requirements of MCL 380.1321, Section 55 of the Pupil Transportation Act, and local district policy with regard to the placement of the bus stop.

Is there a law about how far my child has to walk to the bus stop?

No law specifies the maximum distance a student may walk to the bus stop.

Is there a specified distance that must exist between school bus stops?

The lights on a school bus which are used to notify other traffic of an upcoming stop must, by law, be activated 200 feet from the stop. Thus, bus stops must be at least 200 feet apart.

What other factors are involved in establishing where the school bus stops?

There are many factors which should be taken into consideration when school administrators establish the placement of school bus stops. The basic legal factors are spelled out in MCL 257.1855, but the primary concern is visibility of the bus to other traffic and the consideration of stopping distances necessary for other motor vehicles in order to accomplish safe loading and unloading of the children. In general, state law requires 400 feet of clear and continuous visibility on a highway or roadway where the speed limit is more than 35 miles per hour, and 200 feet where the speed limit is less than 35 miles per hour. There is no state law which specifies a maximum distance between stops.

What about the safety of my child getting to and from the bus stop? There are no sidewalks where we live and it's not very safe walking on the busy road we live on.

It is the responsibility of the parent or legal guardian to see that a child gets safely to and from the bus stop. The school district provides transportation as a non-mandated service and establishes placement of the bus stops in accordance with the requirements of the law.

Is there a law stating that an adult riding on a school bus for monitoring purposes be seated at a specific location on the bus?

There are no law pertaining to this issue. In most cases when adults are assigned to monitor students that are being transported on a bus, they are near the student or students who possess the greatest amount of supervisory need.

My child spends over two hours a day just riding the bus to and from school. Is there a maximum riding time in the law?

There is no maximum riding time in the law for children in kindergarten through grade twelve. Child care licensing regulations establish a maximum riding time of 60 continuous minutes for the transportation of preschool children.

Transportation Safety Tips

Tips for all motorists

Slow down and obey all traffic laws and speed limits

Red overhead flashing lights, possibly accompanied by an extended stop arm, tell you the school bus is stopped to load or unload children. State law requires you to stop at least 20 feet from the front or rear of a school bus when red lights are flashing and not proceed until the school bus resumes motion or until signaled by the school bus driver to proceed.

Be alert and ready to stop. Prepare to stop for a school bus when overhead yellow lights are flashing. Drive with caution if you see the yellow hazard warning lights flashing on a moving or stopped bus. Watch for children walking in the street, especially where there are no sidewalks. Watch for children playing and gathering near bus stops. Watch for children arriving late for the bus who may dart into the street without looking for traffic. When backing out of a driveway or leaving a garage, watch for children walking or biking to school.

Tips for Parents

If your child rides a bus, have them at the bus stop five minutes prior to the buses arrival.

Help your children learn and practice the safety rules for walking, bicycling, or riding in a car or bus. Be a good role model, especially when you are with your children. Always buckle up in your car, always wear a helmet when biking and always follow pedestrian rules.

Supervise young children walking or biking to school or as they wait at the school bus stop.

Tips for Educators

Teach young children the safety rules for walking, bicycling, or riding in a car or bus.

Use free resources from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), such as Kids, the School Bus and You or NHTSA's safety series, Getting to School Safely series for free downloads and classroom handouts. Educators can find this information at the NHTSA website.

Tips for Students

If you ride a school bus, learn and practice the safety rules for waiting at the bus stop, getting on and off the bus, and riding the bus. If you walk to school, learn and practice the safety rules for pedestrians. Always cross at crosswalks or corner to corner. Obey all traffic lights or crossing guard instructions.

Buckle up when you're riding in a car and ride in the back seat. It's the safest place for young people. Be a good role model for your younger brothers, sisters and friends and help them learn and practice safety rules.