New Hanover County Schools


Engaging Students, Achieving Excellence


School Bus Safety

The safety of our school children is a major concern of New Hanover County Schools’ Transportation Department. Transporting your child to and from school is a job we take very seriously. Our goal is to provide the most efficient, timely, and safe service to your youngster. Buses are maintained and inspected constantly by trained mechanical personnel in order to prevent hazards whenever possible. The men and women employed as bus drivers undergo continuous instruction and training concerning the safe operation of school buses and the behavior management of the children who ride them. The Transportation Department strives to maintain the highest standards in school bus safety.

Bus Safety

Student Drop-off at Bus Stops

In the interest of student safety, Pre-K students must be met at the bus stop by a parent or legal guardian. It is the responsibility of the parent or legal guardian to be at the bus stop when the bus arrives.

Kindergarten through 2nd Grade students must be met at the bus stop by a parent or legal guardian unless they have submitted a “Parent/Legal Guardian Permission Form For Unattended Bus Stop Drop-Off” form which can be obtained from the school office. Once the form has been submitted and processed, the student may get off at their assigned stop by themselves.  If for some reason the student is uncomfortable getting off of the bus, the driver will return the student to their school.

Seat Belts on Buses

New Hanover County Schools has 19 buses with student seat belts.  State law requires every passenger to wear their seat belt in its proper location whenever they are being transported.

NC School Bus Stop Law

North Carolina Law, specifically General Statute 20-217, requires motorists to stop for a stopped school bus displaying its stop signal and extended stop sign while picking up or dropping off passengers.  Passing a stopped school bus is a Class 1 Misdemeanor with 5 points assessed on the driver's licence by NCDMV and 4 points on an insurance policy (4 insurance points can raise one's premium by 80%).  Further a Prayer for Judgement Continued (PJC) is not available for passing a stopped school bus.

If found guilty of passing a stopped school bus, a mandatory fine of $500 and court costs of $190 will be collected.  

Every New Hanover County School bus is equipped with multiple cameras that have the ability to capture license plates of drivers failing to stop for stopped school bus.  Recorded images of violators are forwarded to the North Carolina Highway Patrol for law enforcement purposes.

Safety Tips for Students and Parents

Link to North Carolina School Bus Safety Website