School Bus and Transportation
Rules and Regulations

The Marblehead METCO Program strives to safely transport all METCO participants to and from school. This commute to and from Marblehead Public Schools is an average of 60 miles per day.  It is a long and tedious ride.  Therefore,  in order to ensure the safety and comfort of all riders, disrespectful and disruptive behavior will not be tolerated.  Bus riders will be denied the privilege of riding the bus if their behavior is unacceptable or infringes on the rights of other bus riders.  In these cases, it will be the responsibility of the parent or guardian to see that the student is transported to school during this time.

The METCO director, bus monitor and transportation official have the authority to remove a student if he/she becomes uncontrollable while on the bus. The student will not be allowed to board the bus again until granted permission by the METCO Director. If a student damages a school bus, the student will be charged the assessed repair rate set by the State Department of Education. The student responsible will be suspended from riding the bus until restitution is made.  Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken for incidents which involve severe offenses, such as: fighting, possession of weapons, drugs or alcohol, use of tobacco products, any action which endangers the safety of the driver and other students, or damage to the bus. Such action could involve a longer suspension from the bus or other sanction.

Bus Expectations
METCO students and parents are expected to...

    Arrive at their bus stops at least 10 minutes ahead of their scheduled time and should wait up to 20 minutes for their bus.  The bus route will not be changed unless necessary due to construction or weather and, in those cases, parents will be notified ahead of time.  It is, therefore, the responsibility of the METCO family to travel to a stop that is two or three stops ahead on route if you miss the bus for any reason.
    Students must ride their assigned buses. High School/Middle School students may only ride the high school bus and the elementary students may only ride the elementary bus.  Exceptions are made for middle school students who normally ride the 7-12 bus, but in some cases (due to school events) will be assigned to the K-6 bus.
    Obtain parent permission if they want to be picked up or dropped off at a different stop than assigned or plan to stay in Marblehead for any reason.
    Contact the bus company if you suspect the bus is very late or if you are very late picking up your child.
    Follow the driver’s and bus monitor’s directions.
    Stay seated in seat during duration of ride.
    Keep hands, arms, legs, and objects to him/herself and inside the bus.
    Refrain from cursing, name calling, gestures, or loud talking.
    Refrain from pushing, shoving, or annoying other students.
    Refrain from eating, drinking, chewing gum, or littering.
    Wear seat belts if they are in grades 1-6.  It’s the law.
    Keep the center isle free and clear from personal belongings and body parts.
    Clean up their seat and seating area before exiting the bus.

The following behaviors are not permitted…

    Disobeying the instructions of the driver or bus monitor
    Abusive behavior towards the bus driver, the bus monitor, or towards other students.
    Eating or drinking on bus at anytime except when approved by the METCO Director or the bus monitor on early release days.
    Fighting on the bus.
    Inappropriate language of any kind (talking or body language) on the bus.
    Placing head, arms, legs and personal belongings outside the bus windows.
    Making excessive noise or engaging in disruptive behavior including making obscene gestures, using profanity, spitting, or horseplay.
    Possession of weapons, illegal substances such as alcohol or drugs, ignitable or any other dangerous objects.

Discipline Procedures

The Marblehead METCO Program has adopted a progressive discipline policy which emphasizes logical consequences for inappropriate behavior. Parents are encouraged to contact the Marblehead METCO Office any time they have concerns.The METCO Director reserves the right to suspend transportation privileges for any student who demonstrates behavior unreasonably distracting to the driver which may contribute to unsafe bus operation.

The METCO Director and/or the METCO Bus Monitor will determine the extent of the suspension.

Note: Parents will be responsible for providing their children with alternative means of transportation to school and from school as their son/daughter will not be suspended from school, just off all transportation provided by the Marblehead METCO Program.

Serious offenses, such as fighting, flagrant displays of disrepect toward a driver, or possession of drugs or alcohol will result in immediate loss of bus privileges for a period of time to be determined by the Director. Assault on a bus driver will result in indefinite suspension of all bus riding privileges and possible criminal charges.

If a violation occurs more than 45 calendar days after a previous violation, the disciplinary action will be the same as for the previous offense. There may be some exceptions to these disciplinary actions in extraordinary circumstances, as determined by the METCO Director and /or the Bus Monitor. If a student is suspended for misconduct on any bus, the suspension will apply to all buses, regular and late.

At the beginning of the school year, parents will be notified of the Marblehead METCO's Bus Disciplinary Policy, which includes two warnings (one verbal and one written) followed by the initiation of our "three strikes and you're out" policy; the ultimate punishment being barred from riding the bus for the remainder of the school year.

Bus service is a privilege, not a right…
It requires safe, orderly and respectful behavior on the part of all students. 

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