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Certification Regulations

April 19, 2021
Monday

TITLE 37

Part 1, Chapter 14, Sub-Chapter C, Rule §14.34 

School Bus Driver Certification

(a) To obtain full initial driver certification, a person must satisfactorily complete the certification course. The training agency shall issue a "Texas School Bus Driver Safety Training Certificate," Figure 6: §14.1(6) of this title (relating to Appendix), in a timely manner, and submit the necessary verification information electronically to the Texas Department of Public Safety, Figure 8: 14.1(8) of this title.

(b) Driver certification will remain valid for a period of three calendar years as indicated by the expiration date on the certificate.

(c) State law requires that every driver transporting students in a school bus must hold a valid certificate stating that they have completed, or are enrolled in, an approved school bus driver safety training course.

(d) Any school bus driver whose certification has expired shall not operate a school bus for the transportation of students until such time as they become recertified or obtain an enrollment certificate. The following rules shall apply to certification renewals:

  (1) To avoid a lapse in certification, the recertification course must be completed prior to expiration. The recertification course should be completed during the six-month (180 day) period immediately preceding certification expiration. If the required training is completed within this preferred time interval, certification will then be renewed for a period of three calendar years from the upcoming expiration date indicated on the current certificate.

  (2) If the recertification course is completed more than 180 days prior to certification expiration, certification will then be renewed for a period of three calendar years from the actual date of course completion.

  (3) During the 12-month interval immediately following certification expiration, the recertification course may be completed for certification renewal. Certification will then be renewed for a period of three calendar years from the actual date of course completion. Failure to satisfactorily complete the recertification course during this time frame will require completion of the certification course to reinstate certification status. During this time period, a person shall not drive a school bus unless he has received an enrollment certificate. Issuance of an enrollment certificate during this dormant time interval will require the successful completion of the certification course in order to reinstate full certification status.

(e) Regardless of the reason, any course instruction missed must be completed by arrangement with the training agency. Except as approved by the training agency, all course requirements for certification must be completed within the 180-day period immediately following the start of instruction, otherwise no credit will be given for any class sessions previously attended. The entire course must be completed prior to awarding certification.

 

TITLE 37

Part 1, Chapter 14, Sub-Chapter C, Rule §14.35 

Enrollment Certificates

(a)    A training agency may grant a qualified applicant temporary and provisional certification status in the form of an "Enrollment Certificate" upon receipt of a completed application, Figure 7: §14.1(7) of this title (relating to Appendix) from the requesting employer stating that this person has fulfilled all of the following eligibility requirements:

(1)    at least 18 years of age;

(2)    possess a valid driver's license designating a class appropriate (with applicable endorsements if commercial driver's license) for the gross vehicle weight rating and manufacturer's designed passenger capacity of motor vehicle to be operated;

(3)    an acceptable driving record (secured from the Texas Department of Public Safety) determined in accordance with the current "School Bus Driver's Driving Record Evaluation," Figure 3: §14.1(3);

(4)    an acceptable criminal history record (secured from any law enforcement agency) reviewed in accordance with the provisions of current state statute (see Texas Education Code, §22.084);

(5)    an acceptable physical and mental examination evaluated in accordance with all qualifications and standards specified on the current form, Medical Examination Report for School Bus Drivers; and pre-employment/pre-duty drug testing (evaluated in accordance with current federal law); and

(6)    each school district or contractor must ensure drivers have an acceptable level of knowledge and skill regarding the safe operation of school buses. It is the employer's inherent responsibility to ensure that the driver understands the contents of Units II, IV, V, VIII and X of the current Course Guide for School Bus Driver Training in Texas .

(b) In addition to the prerequisites listed in subsection (a) of this section, the following rules shall apply to the issuance of all enrollment certificates:

(1)    recipients must register for the first available twenty-hour basic certification course as determined by the training agency. Except as approved by the training agency, failure to satisfactorily complete the course as scheduled shall result in revocation of the certificate, and a consecutive enrollment certificate shall not be reissued;

(2)    it is highly recommended that all enrollment certificates shall be dated to expire no later than 180 days past the date issued. In the event a class is not scheduled within 180 days, the enrollment certificate may be dated to expire within a reasonable period of time following the conclusion of the first available certification course. Except as approved by the training agency, a minimum of five years must elapse between the issuance of consecutive enrollment certificates;

(3)    the training agency may charge a reasonable fee for the issuance of an enrollment certificate, not to exceed the actual cost for processing; and

(4)    an enrollment certificate shall be the standard school bus driver safety training certificate so designated by the words, "Enrollment Certificate" stamped or printed diagonally across the face of the training certificate;

(5)    the training agency shall submit, in a timely manner, the necessary verification information electronically to the Texas Department of Public Safety, Figure 8: §14.1(8) of this title.

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