28-3228. School bus drivers; requirements; rules; cancellation

A. A person shall not operate a school bus transporting school children unless the person possesses the appropriate license class for the size of school bus being operated that is issued by the department of transportation, a bus endorsement that is issued by the department of transportation and a school bus certificate that is issued by the department of public safety.

B. To be certified as a school bus driver a person shall do both of the following:

1. Meet and maintain the minimum standards prescribed by this section and rules adopted by the department of public safety in consultation with the school bus advisory council established by section 28-3053.

2. Complete an initial instructional course on school bus driver safety and training including behind the wheel training.

C. The department of public safety in consultation with the school bus advisory council established by section 28-3053 shall adopt rules that establish minimum standards for the certification of school bus drivers. In cooperation with local school districts, the department of public safety shall provide for school bus driver safety and training courses. The standards established shall:

1. Include requirements concerning moral character, knowledge of school bus operation, pupil and motor vehicle safety, physical impairments that might affect the applicant's ability to safely operate a school bus or that might endanger the health or safety of school bus passengers, knowledge of first aid, establishment of school bus safety and training courses, a refresher course to be completed on at least a biennial basis and other matters as the department of public safety and the school bus advisory council established by section 28-3053 prescribe for the protection of the public.

2. Require tests to detect the presence of alcohol or the use of a drug in violation of title 13, chapter 34 that may adversely affect the ability of the applicant to safely operate a school bus.

3. Authorize the performance of hearing tests with or without the use of a hearing aid as provided in 49 Code of Federal Regulations section 391.41.

D. Each person who applies for a school bus driver certificate shall have a valid fingerprint clearance card that is issued pursuant to title 41, chapter 12, article 3.1 and shall submit an identity verified fingerprint card as described in section 15-106 that the department of public safety shall use to process the fingerprint clearance card as outlined in section 15-106.

E. A person who is issued a school bus driver certificate shall maintain a valid identity verified fingerprint clearance card for the duration of any school bus driver certification period.

F. The department of public safety shall suspend a school bus driver certificate if the fingerprint clearance card is invalid, suspended, canceled or revoked.

G. The department of public safety shall issue a school bus driver certificate to an applicant who meets the requirements of this section.  The certificate is valid if the applicant maintains the minimum standards established by this section.

H. The department of public safety may cancel the certificate if the person's license to drive is suspended, canceled, revoked or disqualified. The department of public safety shall cancel the certificate if the person fails to maintain the minimum standards established pursuant to this section. A person whose application for a certificate is refused or whose certificate is canceled for failure to meet or maintain the minimum standards may request and receive a hearing from the department of public safety.

I. The department of public safety shall enforce the rules adopted pursuant to this section.