Important Things You Need to Know About School Bus Operators in St. Louis, MO

While school buses make getting kids to and from school easier for parents whose work schedule conflicts with school starting and stopping times, do you ever question how qualified bus drivers actually are? Perhaps you wonder how often their driving skills are tested? Maybe you would like to know whether bus drivers are permitted to operate a bus despite the criminal record they have?

The truth is, knowing the answers to these questions may help an indecisive parent make an informed decision as to whether they want their child riding the school bus or just provide a concerned parent with the information they might want. And that is why we are addressing these questions and many more down below for you.


  1. How often do Missouri bus drivers go through training?


According to the Missouri Department of Elementary & Secondary Education, bus drivers are trained on an annual basis. Each school district provides at least eight hours of school bus driver training to each bus operator who is employed by the school district.


  1. How often does a bus driver need to renew their license and/or school bus endorsement?


A school bus driver who is under the age of 70 is required to renew their school bus endorsement with their driver’s license on the normal renewal cycle which is every six years. If the bus operator is over 70 years of age, they need to renew on an annual basis.


  1. When is a fingerprint-based criminal history check run on a school bus driver?


The school district is expected to conduct a fingerprint-based criminal background check for all new school bus drivers. However, the school district may allow these drivers to operate a bus while awaiting the results of the criminal background check.


  1. Will a school district allow a bus driver to operate a school bus after causing an accident?


If the last question left you feeling a bit uneasy, then you should know that there have been cases where bus drivers who were guilty of causing an accident and even received a citation for their negligent behavior, were still permitted to operate a school bus.

According to Fox 2, after digging through court documents back in November, the news source found that a bus driver who caused a fatal accident that cost the Wentzville School District millions was still permitted to drive after the fact.  Another bus driver, who was identified as Gerald Goodin, was scheduled to appear in court for a civil trial in March after running a stop sign and hitting a driver. He was still listed as a driver for Hazelwood Schools although the district stated he was employed by another school district.

While it appears each school district likely handles an accident on a case by case basis, you may want to contact Missouri’s public-school transportation department at 573-751-0357 to find out how your child’s school handles a case involving a school bus driver who caused an accident to occur.


And if your child has already been involved in an accident with a school bus in Missouri, whether it occurred while they were riding the bus or getting on your off the vehicle, contact today. We will get you connected with a local St. Louis, MO bus accident attorney who can assess the details of the incident and determine if it would be in your best interest to file a civil suit against the school district and/or the bus driver.