Pupil Transportation

Transportation Memo from Assistant Commissioner Coughlin on Testing and Training

To:  Master Instructors and School Bus Driver Instructors

From:  Christina Coughlin, Assistant Commissioner

Date:  June 8, 2020

Re:  Pupil Transportation Testing and Training Update

The New York State Education Department (NYSED) has been engaged in addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on pupil transportation.  To that end, NYSED made several initial modifications to our regulations with the intent of returning to full compliance with the permanent regulations once in person instruction is restored for students.  For now, the Pupil Transportation Unit has modified the requirements for the end of the 2019-2020 school year and the 2020-2021 summer school session.  The following changes will be instituted:

Refresher Training:  If the district/company did not complete the second refresher training session due to the COVID 19 shutdown there are two options: 

  • The Pupil Transportation Safety Institute will be providing the three refresher topics through telecommunication.  Employees can sign on to their website to complete the training they need.
  • If the district/contractor operation is in a region that successfully reached the appropriate phase of reopening, a refresher can be presented in person. The group size is limited to 10 people, including the instructor, and all CDC guidelines must be followed.

Bus Safety Drill:  The third required bus drill for 2019-2020 will be waived since schools were closed in March 2020. Only two school bus safety drills will be required to be in the file for the 2019-2020 school year.

Physical Performance Test:  The Physical Performance Test (PPT) for drivers, monitors and attendants, which were postponed until school was back in session, will be postponed until the regions are in the proper phase of reopening and carriers/districts are able to conduct the test following the CDC guidelines.

  • If the Physical Performance Test are given after their due date, please mark on the form “PPT was delayed due to the COVID 19 pandemic.”
  • Districts and contractors will be expected to have drivers, monitors and attendants back in compliance within 60 days following the first day of school in September 2020 or when schools begin in-person education.
  • In relation to the question of drivers, monitors and attendants being required to retake a physical performance test because they where out of work for more than sixty days, the Department’s new regulations state a PPT “shall be administered for a driver, monitor and attendant who is unavailable for service for sixty or more days from his or her scheduled work duties.”  If the employee has been available to work but has not had work to perform for more than 60 days, an additional PPT is not needed.

Basic and Advanced Course Training:  The Basic and Advanced Course for drivers and the Basic Course for monitors and attendants will be permitted once the region has reached the appropriate phase of reopening and must follow all the CDC guidelines.




Last Updated: July 3, 2020