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Jake
Top Member

USA
3518 Posts

Posted - 03/20/2012 :  4:54:11 PM  Show Profile  Visit Jake's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Do you give your students assigned seats at the beginning of the school year? Yes or no?

I'm sure this has probably been discussed before but I just wanted to know how other drivers felt about assigned seating and whether or not it's effective.

bluebirdvision
Top Member

USA
998 Posts

Posted - 03/20/2012 :  5:07:58 PM  Show Profile  Click to see bluebirdvision's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
My district does, its required by the insurance company.

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Jake
Top Member

USA
3518 Posts

Posted - 03/21/2012 :  06:10:34 AM  Show Profile  Visit Jake's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by bluebirdvision

My district does, its required by the insurance company.



That's really interesting. I've never heard that before.

Over the entire time I was in public school, I've only had two drivers give us assigned seating. One was because we had a bunch of rowdy kids. The other was because the driver wanted to know us by name and be able to solve any problems that may arise more efficiently. In that case, we were able to pick our own seats but we had to keep the same seat the remainder of the year.


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08 Thomas EF
Top Member

530 Posts

Posted - 03/21/2012 :  2:22:30 PM  Show Profile  Visit 08 Thomas EF's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Here, it depends on the driver. Some are very strict (particicularly in elementary school) about where students sit and whether or not it's window or aisle. High school and middle school are combined and the middle schoolers might get assigned seats or assigned areas by grade, and the high schoolers sit anywhere in the last few rows. My driver last year didn't care at all about seating.

How about numbering -- do you all have numbered seats? I thought that was the norm, but thanks to the Internet, it isn't always. I've seen three different numbering schemes on my buses. Usually, it's odd numbers on one side, even on the others. Some have, for example, 1-10 on one side and 11-20 on the other side. One had 1-13 on each side but the actual numbers were red on one side and blue on the other. These were tape-like numberes that got taped on. Most drivers use stick-on numbers similar to what you'd use on a mailbox, some just take a Sharpee and hand-write them, some write them (along with student names) on an index card and use clear packing tape to tape the cards up.
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Sam
Advanced Member

United States
389 Posts

Posted - 03/21/2012 :  4:57:15 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I had a seating chart with approximate places, and used it until I learned the students' names. Then I relaxed a bit for the middle school and the high school, and had a girls side and a boys side. It worked for me. Elementary, because of the shear number of them (60 on a 65 pax), had strict assigned seats. First ones on were the last ones off, and they were in the back. I did it that way for 2 reasons - quicker load & unload times, and in the afternoon my bus got quieter, faster. :)
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Thomasbus24
Administrator

USA
3345 Posts

Posted - 03/22/2012 :  12:56:28 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ohio law requires assigned seating, that kinda takes care of it. If you crash, they want to know who was where.
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busfan1979
Active Member

13 Posts

Posted - 03/24/2012 :  2:07:01 PM  Show Profile  Visit busfan1979's Homepage  Reply with Quote
On the elementary school run, yes. High school and middle school, no. I know other drivers in the district who do, however, for all three. When I was in high school, we had a driver who did not. However, someone in the back of the bus threw a piece of paper out the window and the driver did not see who it was but he did notice it in the side mirror. After that, since no one confessed, the back 3 rows were off limits. So, we were all crammed into the first 8 rows.
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mcgoo
Active Member

Canada
28 Posts

Posted - 03/27/2012 :  4:17:34 PM  Show Profile  Visit mcgoo's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I like to assign seats. At stops where a lot of students get on, they get to their seats faster when they know where to go as to stopping and wasting time wondering where to sit. It's also easier to know if a student is on when your at his stop at night, rather then looking up in your mirror looking throughout the bus to see if his is on. Another reason for assigned seats is if that person is assigned a seat he is more likely not to do any damage to that seat as well as but garbage on the floor.
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MeowLeFae
Senior Member

USA
54 Posts

Posted - 03/28/2012 :  7:50:57 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
High school and middle school are combined in my district. Middle school sits in the front half of the bus and high school sits in the back.

Elementary school is K-5, so I have "sticky" notes over each seat with a grade number. The grade number is as far back as they are allowed to sit. It solved many of the behavior problems that I had at the beginning of the school year, such as kindergartners sitting in the back with the 5th graders.

"Bet you never smelled a real school bus before!" (From Ferris Bueller's Day Off)
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RweThereYet
Active Member

USA
33 Posts

Posted - 03/31/2012 :  12:16:32 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Our elementary and intermediate are supposedly assigned by grades, ie K in front - 6th in the rear, etc.

Mix-n-match one grade level only, and only if necessary = not enough seats or an issue with Susy or Johnny.

Then of course we can't overlook those times when a teacher or administrator comes out and states that Susy or Johnny must sit in front because of something we know nothing about; and, regardless of what the driver already has in place regarding seating and why. No questions asked, just do it!

Next we toss in those parent requests/demands about their child having to sit with their friends, or not wanting their child sitting anywhere near Susy or Johnny and things start to get interesting.

But mind you, the driver is in charge and still accountible for discipline, even though they have next to no say as to placement.

Makes total sense to me. . . . .

Edited by - RweThereYet on 03/31/2012 12:20:22 PM
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sbd37091
Senior Member

93 Posts

Posted - 03/31/2012 :  5:36:17 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I transport 75-85 students, K thru 12, in a 90 passenger BlueBird AAFE.

My K,1,2 students sit up to four students per seat in the first ten seats, grades 3 thru 6 students sit three to the seat anywhere in the next ten seats and 7 thru 12 students sit two students to the seat in the rear ten seats.

This works great. The younger kids are nearby and within normal voice range to facilitate disciplining. As they get older and more mature, they migrate to the back of the bus.

The older students appreciate the privilege of sitting in the back and require very little disciplining.
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GIJane72
New Member

3 Posts

Posted - 04/03/2012 :  5:48:54 PM  Show Profile  Visit GIJane72's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Our district requires assigned seating until High School. Of course, there is no way to really enforce it. Many drivers don't assign seats. I assign seats to my elementary students and definitely think the Junior High benefit as well. If the seats are vandalized...it limits the suspects. We have a lot of problems with vandalism in our district, though.
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thewallfan
Active Member

USA
36 Posts

Posted - 04/05/2012 :  12:52:58 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Thomasbus24

Ohio law requires assigned seating, that kinda takes care of it. If you crash, they want to know who was where.

better tell that to my driver i had in grades 1-3 . my driver gave us assigned seat and really only inforces it to the elementry kids

IC your CE
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HP9K
New Member

3 Posts

Posted - 04/16/2012 :  09:52:54 AM  Show Profile  Visit HP9K's Homepage  Reply with Quote
With my middle school and high school students, I have a written seating chart, as our county requires it, but I pretty much let those kids figure out their seating during the first couple of weeks of school and I simply record where they all ended up. I may have to move a few of them during the course of the year, but that has generally worked OK.

But with the elementary schools, I absolutely have to have one. I start the year with the youngest in the front, oldest in the back - boys on one side and girls on the other. Their names are on 3x5 index cards taped over the seats. As the year progresses, I fine tune their seating. If I find I have older kids that are trouble makers - well, they don't like being moved up front with the "little kids". That usually settles them down and in a few days I let them move back to their original seats.

With all my schools, I try to leave the first row open (or at least the 1st seat on the passenger's side) so I can immediately move a kid up there if they are causing problems.
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coolbuskid
Active Member

39 Posts

Posted - 05/09/2012 :  10:44:22 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Thomasbus24

Ohio law requires assigned seating, that kinda takes care of it. If you crash, they want to know who was where.



That must be hard for a driver to keep track of. How do you handle field trips? What about when a student doesn't ride one day? Does all that have to be kept track of at the driver's distraction? It's also not efficient, because the best way of loading passengers is to assign rows to be filled back-to-front. Limiting where riders can sit adds more logistical cost at the loading point, and doesn't account for any special needs. For instance, I sometimes like riding in the back because there's more cargo room, but if I don't need the space I sit in another seat and open the space for someone else who might need it. A rigid assigned seating system would either prevent me from using the back as needed, or prevent someone else from using it when I didn't need it. On band trips, the back is usually taken by the percussion section, then the brass section in front of or next to that. Do you have to figure out who's in what section, or do you just let them do their thing of loading equipment and sitting where there's an open seat? It sounds like this assigned seating legislation might need some adjustment or reinterpretation, or the drivers have already figured out how to get around the potential inefficiencies.

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Thomasbus24
Administrator

USA
3345 Posts

Posted - 05/21/2012 :  1:18:43 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You are over thinking it.

Can't speak for the large cities, but the other 90% of us have the same kids every day, they sit where you assign them, they remember the seat, the seat number, the location in regards to features of the bus, proximity to friends and so forth. Or you could be like I was when I drove daily...names above the windows, that worked well.

Field trips, the teachers are supposed to do seating charts...it doesn't happen. As for the band, I've never known them to be instrument classification specific as to where they sit. This falls under the field trip category...supposed to be assigned seating, but it doesn't happen.

I may be young, but I came from the old school and was trained that way. You do what we tell you to do or you don't ride. Obsolete thinking I know.

Edited by - Thomasbus24 on 05/21/2012 1:20:02 PM
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Trailboss
Senior Member

United States
149 Posts

Posted - 05/23/2012 :  11:48:22 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have been driving for over 35 years and have not ever assigned seats to all passengers.If I have a problem with a student I move that student to an assigned seat until his or her behavor improves. On field trips a teacher or school official must accompany the students on the bus and they are responsible how they want there students to sit and for discipline on the trip. If I see something that attracts my attention I ask the teacher or school official to take care of The problem.If you try to take over and not let them help they will just seat there and not try to help you.
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Thomasbus24
Administrator

USA
3345 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2012 :  09:00:13 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Now I'm curious. Let's to an Ohio survey...I'm thinking the smaller schools are going to be a YES, the big cities schools will be a NO.

Hey Mike, do you have assigned seats?
Hey Greg, do you have assigned seats?
Hey Ryan Da., do you have assigned seats?
Hey Jason S, do your drivers have assigned seats?
Hey Jason L, do your drivers have assigned seats?

Edited by - Thomasbus24 on 05/30/2012 09:02:29 AM
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98TomFord
Top Member

USA
812 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2012 :  10:01:07 AM  Show Profile  Visit 98TomFord's Homepage  Send 98TomFord an AOL message  Reply with Quote
To TB24 - I've got assigned seats yes. I had assigned seats before the school year even started, mostly because I knew the kids already and knew where to place them on the bus amongst the other kids. We haul K-12 all together, so with that, I've had my bus pretty much grade oriented the entire year. Kindergarten up in the first rows and my Juniors (since I had no seniors) were in the last two rows.

Starting the first day with assigned seats worked great, helped me learn the new names quickly and the kids knew where to sit that afternoon and so on. Now granted there's been changes and kids have been moved around, but I stay VERY strick with the assigned seats and do not permit anyone to change seats without me addressing them to do so. Since we are running our buses more loaded this year too because of this K-12 busing, when I revised my seating chart about 2-3 weeks after school started I knew which students were going to be riding everyday, AM Only or PM only and went from there. Every seat has 2 students assigned to it, the seats with a 3rd person assigned to it is a student that only rides half a day or maybe twice a week or just never rides period. This has helped as well in keeping the bus moving quickly when loading & unloading. Say your the first person in your seat out of 3 persons, then you sit by the window, if your the last person in your seat out of 3 persons, then you sit by the aisle.

I saw someone asked about numbers, our buses are evens on the drivers side & odds on the passenger side.

Now as to where I worked previously, we were required by the trans. supervisor to have an updated seating chart monthly, or anytime we had a change - and this was for Youngstown City Schools none the less. Now did all the drivers do this, no, but Ohio law does require every full time driver in Ohio to have an up to date seating chart for EVERY assigned student to that bus whether they ride or not. I kept up with mine, it may not have been 100% accurate all the time, but it was better then most at YCS. Where I work now, the trans. supervisor doesn't even require a seating chart (nor any mandated thing by the state) which I'd say 80% of our drivers go along with. I on the other hand have everything required by Ohio Law.

Lastly, to back TB24 on the field trip issue... Yes, even field trips, sporting events and anything else requiring a bus to transport students is suspose to have assigned seats. It's more of a impractical thing to enforce then it is to just have the coach/teacher know who is present on the bus (as that information as to who is on the bus is required from the teacher/coach & not the driver). I've never tried to enforce it and I dunno of any driver in Ohio that has either (although I'm sure there's some prudes out there that do). It's just a battle you aren't going to win.


*Side note to "Coolbuskid" - When you become a bus driver, it's a whole different view then being a rider. So thinking about it some more from a drivers view then being mad because you couldn't sit in the back of the bus might help ya out with this question of assigned seats.

My Ford Can Turn On $50, Can Your Int? ~Ford Buses - Gems To The Eyes~

Edited by - 98TomFord on 05/30/2012 10:06:12 AM
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1983WardFord
Top Member

USA
1376 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2012 :  4:55:01 PM  Show Profile  Send 1983WardFord an AOL message  Send 1983WardFord a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
I kinda have assigned seats. I inherited this route in the middle of the year (I would never have picked it if I had a better lot to choose from!) and for the most part, I felt I was lucky to get them to sit down at all, so I didn't push the issue. I also have less than 10 kids on all my routes except one which has around 15, and they pretty much sit in the same place every day. Maybe next year when I can start off on my own route from the beginning will I assign seats.

Due to the current economic condition, the light at the end of the tunnel has been turned off until further notice.
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Thomasfan89
Top Member

USA
1142 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2012 :  6:35:18 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Thomasbus24

Now I'm curious. Let's to an Ohio survey...I'm thinking the smaller schools are going to be a YES, the big cities schools will be a NO.

Hey Mike, do you have assigned seats?
Hey Greg, do you have assigned seats?
Hey Ryan Da., do you have assigned seats?
Hey Jason S, do your drivers have assigned seats?
Hey Jason L, do your drivers have assigned seats?




I hate to admit it, but I do not have assigned seats on my bus. Honestly, I never knew it was the law to have assigned seats here, as our administration has never pressed the issue. The only group that is "required" as far as we're concerned to have assigned seats are the PM Middle School runs (grades 6-8).

Now I will say this, on all of my runs (AM high school then K-8, PM K-5 then high school), the kids sit in the same seats every day and so far, from year to year also. Its just routine to them. My main "rules" in regards to seating on my bus are as follows: The oldest students sit in the back and the youngest up front. I do have exceptions to this, such as students that need to sit up front for various reasons. I separate the troublesome groups ASAP and do enforce that they are not to sit together. Behavior wise, and I hate to jinx myself, I have had very few issues since I've had the run, so I haven't felt the need to officially assign seats.

Capacity wise, I run a 71 pass, and my routes contain approximately 20, 60, 40 and 40. Very rarely do I have three to a seat, with the 60 being the exception, of course. Having all seats filled with two per seat is common on all but my one route with the 20 students, so there is some lee-way with extra students, whether they are occasional, seasonal, going to a friends house (allowed as long as district policy is fulfilled, of course) or new to the run.

As for field trips, the teachers do, for the most part, assign the kids where they want them to sit, however, there is no formal seating chart. Athletics being the big exception here, of course.

So overall, the answer is no from our medium-sized suburban Ohio district. Knowing what I know now, next school year, I will be breaking out the seating charts and having them on file to fulfill the law if nothing else.

-Greg
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imadriver2
Active Member

19 Posts

Posted - 06/27/2012 :  12:42:46 PM  Show Profile  Visit imadriver2's Homepage  Reply with Quote
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I transport 75-85 students, K thru 12, in a 90 passenger BlueBird AAFE.

My K,1,2 students sit up to four students per seat in the first ten seats, grades 3 thru 6 students sit three to the seat anywhere in the next ten seats and 7 thru 12 students sit two students to the seat in the rear ten seats.

This works great. The younger kids are nearby and within normal voice range to facilitate disciplining. As they get older and more mature, they migrate to the back of the bus.

The older students appreciate the privilege of sitting in the back and require very little disciplining.

....

4 Students PER SEAT?
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imadriver2
Active Member

19 Posts

Posted - 06/27/2012 :  12:45:15 PM  Show Profile  Visit imadriver2's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Oh and YES.. Our grade and Middle schools have assigned seats. It is mandatory. most drivers were doing this brfore it became mandatory. Saved a whole lotta hassle for the kids to get seated quickly and get going. Otherwise they move around 2 or 3 times until they got settled.
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littlebit
Advanced Member

431 Posts

Posted - 06/27/2012 :  4:17:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I usually don't assign seats...but towards the end of the school year, I started having major problems. These problems were not being handled by the school, so I assigned seats for everyone for grades k-8th. They sat in the order that they got off the bus and with a brother/sister or whoever they got on the bus with..Talk about unhappy people..I even had 3 parents pull their kids off the bus..but I was not backing down and after our kindergartens students start this school year they will have assigned seating again

Bus 34
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sbd37091
Senior Member

93 Posts

Posted - 06/28/2012 :  11:31:14 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by imadriver2

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I transport 75-85 students, K thru 12, in a 90 passenger BlueBird AAFE.

My K,1,2 students sit up to four students per seat in the first ten seats, grades 3 thru 6 students sit three to the seat anywhere in the next ten seats and 7 thru 12 students sit two students to the seat in the rear ten seats.

This works great. The younger kids are nearby and within normal voice range to facilitate disciplining. As they get older and more mature, they migrate to the back of the bus.

The older students appreciate the privilege of sitting in the back and require very little disciplining.

....

4 Students PER SEAT?



Yes, but only for K,1,2 students.
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yelobus
New Member

1 Posts

Posted - 09/11/2013 :  10:34:36 AM  Show Profile  Visit yelobus's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Our department management tells us that assigned seating is a state law. But it is not in Texas. So much for credibility.
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RweThereYet
Active Member

USA
33 Posts

Posted - 09/13/2013 :  6:46:32 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
re: 4 per seat - - - Do they share seat belts as well ? ? ?



quote:
Originally posted by sbd37091

quote:
Originally posted by imadriver2

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I transport 75-85 students, K thru 12, in a 90 passenger BlueBird AAFE.

My K,1,2 students sit up to four students per seat in the first ten seats, grades 3 thru 6 students sit three to the seat anywhere in the next ten seats and 7 thru 12 students sit two students to the seat in the rear ten seats.

This works great. The younger kids are nearby and within normal voice range to facilitate disciplining. As they get older and more mature, they migrate to the back of the bus.

The older students appreciate the privilege of sitting in the back and require very little disciplining.

....

4 Students PER SEAT?



Yes, but only for K,1,2 students.

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