The work involves responsibility for the safe and efficient operation of a school bus in transporting students to and from school and school district functions. The employee is charged with the safety of the children upon entry to the vehicle and during their transport. The employee may be accompanied by a School Bus Attendant. The Attendant maintains order if present, but the driver assumes responsibility in the Attendant's absence. It is the employee's responsibility to check the vehicle for safety purposes prior to making trips. A supervisor assigns bus routes and periodically evaluates the employee's driving skills and knowledge of State laws applicable to transporting students. There is no supervision exercised by this class. Does related work as required.




Operates a school bus or mini van on assigned routes in transporting students to and from school classes and special activities as established by the district.

Checks the vehicle before a run to insure its proper operation.

Makes reports of any unusual occurrences that occur during a trip, e.g. such as student behavior problems and operation malfunctions with the vehicle.

May be required to fill gas tank, check oil and battery before taking bus on run.

May be required to perform related work such as replace tires, put on chains, hose off vehicle etc.




Good knowledge of a motor vehicle operation as applies to school bus driving.

Working knowledge of the New York State Motor Vehicle Regulations relative to transporting school children.

Skill in the operation of a school bus.

Ability to establish and maintain order with the students.

Ability to follow simple oral or written instructions.

Physical conditions commensurate with the demand of the position.




There are no minimum qualifications.




Possession of a valid CDL class B with Passenger (P) and School Bus (S) endorsement motor vehicle license issued by the State of New York at time of appointment.

The school district is responsible for insuring that drivers possess valid licenses for the type of vehicle being operated.

In addition, candidates must be at least twenty-one (21) years of age.


10/05 Revised

Bus Driver




Bus drivers operate a motor vehicle, defined as a 'Bus' in the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law, to transport passengers to pre-planned destinations.


Bus drivers must pass a qualifying physical examination, and be able to see at least 20/40 in each eye. Bus drivers must demonstrate good eye-hand-foot coordination, and good spatial (three-dimensional) perception to enable good judgment of distance for safe and precise passing, braking and parking. Bus drivers must be able to interact well with both adults and children.


License Requirements


Bus drivers must possess a Commercial Driver's License (CDL), with a Passenger (P) endorsement (certain school bus drivers also need a School Bus (S) endorsement). The motor carrier company that employs a bus driver must file an application for qualification on behalf of the prospective bus driver with the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles. Applicants to drive school buses may also be required to be fingerprinted and pay a processing fee, so that a criminal background check may be performed.


Age Requirements


New York State bus drivers must be 18 years of age. Bus drivers that drive interstate and school bus must be at least 21 years of age.


Education Requirements


Non-mandatory training is available from commercial driving schools.


Experience Requirements


No minimum work experience is required to become a licensed bus driver in New York State.


Fees: (as of July 14, 2014)


$40 -- Skills test

License -- Up to $164.50, depending on exact type, and up to $180.50 for an 8-year renewal.


Examination Requirements


Written Examination -- Multiple choice; 80 percent passing criteria.

Vision Examination -- Standard Snellen; 20/40 in each eye, with or without corrective lenses.

Skills Examination -- On-the-road Driving Skills, plus Pre-Trip Vehicle Inspection.


A waiver of the Skill and Written Examinations is granted if a domestic, out-of-state license is surrendered for reciprocity.


Article 19-A of the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law


Article 19-A of the NYS Vehicle and Traffic Law requires employers of bus drivers to obtain the following from bus driver applicants: a current physical exam, an employment background check, a current abstract of driving record. For questions regarding Article 19-A, contact the NYS DMV Bus Driver Unit at 518-473-9455 or via mail at:

Bus Driver Unit

6 Empire State Plaza, Room 136B

Albany, New York 12228


Licenses Issued and Active


In 2013, there were 10,704 licenses issued for Article 19-A Bus Driver.

As of July 14, 2014 there were 84,174 active licenses in New York State.


Licensing Authority


New York State Department of Motor Vehicles

Various state and county Motor Vehicle Offices located throughout New York State.


For Locations, visit the Department of Motor Vehicles Web site at: or contact the NYS DMV Call Center at:


From Area Code(s) Please Call

212, 646, 917, 718, 347, 917 & 929 (212) 645-5550 or

(718) 966-6155

516, 914, 631, & 845 (718) 477-4820

315, 518, 585, 607 & 716 (518) 486-9786

Out of New York State (518) 473-5595

Standard Occupational Classification


53-3021 - Bus Drivers, Transit and Intercity

To learn more about this occupation search the Occupational Information Network (O*Net).




Fees stated and other information contained in this report are subject to change. Please contact the licensing authority listed above for the most current information.


This page was last updated on 8/5/14.



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