How to Become a School Bus Driver

If you have an interest in working with children and youth, driving a school bus may be a great job for you!  Approximately 18,000 school buses travel two million kilometers in Ontario every school day.  Professional school bus drivers provide 300 million safe rides each school year.  You could play an important role in student safety and transportation.

School Bus Drivers are professionally trained and highly skilled and must complete the most comprehensive courses on safety.  Some of the responsibilities are below:


School Bus Driver Trainings

  1. Epi-Pin Training ( the administering of epinephrine to a student with an allergenic reaction.)
  2. Smart Driver – training to the driver that teaches proper procedures in regards to conservation of fuel and idling issues in school yards etc. (green)
  3. Student Management – training provided to the school bus driver to assist the driver in management tools and strategies on handling multiple groups of children.
  4. Non-Violent Crisis Intervention – driver training course that teaches the recognition of anger and its progressive qualities. How to defuse anger issues before it reaches the acting out state. Drivers are also trained in defensive posture and technique to protect one’s self with violent individuals. This program provides the training required by employers to address the provincial requirements of  Bill 168.
  5.  Bullying Training – School Bus Drivers a trained in the merits and administration of Bill 157. This Bill addresses the need to report extreme student Behaviour I.e.: fighting, bullying, drugs and alcohol which must be reported to the school authorities via a report.
  6. Autism Spectrum Disorder training- School Bus Drivers are training in the management of autistic children. Providing education to the driver that addresses triggers and remedy to handling autistic children.
  7. Human Rights – Racial & cultural training- driver training designed to heighten the driver’s awareness when dealing with various ethnic cultures regarding issues such as dress, manners etc. Vulnerable Sector Screening
  8. First Rider Program – driver training for junior kindergarten students – practical and visual training by the driver complete with handouts to parents, teaching both parents and students bus safety.
  9. Post Trip Inspection – School Bus Drivers are required to complete a post trip inspection. Ministry of Transportation  requires that even minor vehicle defects are reported and repaired prior to use on the am route. In effect, vehicles that develop minor defects must not be placed in service. Vehicles that develop minor defects while in operation are allowed to continue on route with the blessing of dispatch or maintenance. The post trip reduces those incidences were a bus must be taken out of service after discovering a minor defect prior to their run by discovering it after vehicle use, thus giving the maintenance department an opportunity to repair prior to the next run. Therefore reducing the out of service frequency of the fleet. This in turn enhances our level of service and stability to our customer.
  10. Accident Procedure Training – protocol
  11. Bus Evacuation Procedures – hands on training with passenger regarding the various methods of bus evac.
  12. School Bus Driver Improvement Course- required by ministry at time of driver license upgrade and subsequently by the parent training facility I.e.: IHSA on a 3 year cycle.
  13. First Aid CPR training – required by the consortia upon initial training and every 3 years there after.
  14. Lost Child, Late Bus, Late Parent, Ride refusal, authorized stops – This training is mandated by the school board’s transportation departments (called consortia) dealing with protocol and management of issues found on board the school bus.


Points 1, 5, 7, 10 and 11 are retrained annually as a  requirement.

Points 2, 3, 4, 12 and 13 are retrained every three years.