Background Checks for School Bus Drivers

Something new is taking place for school bus drivers in one area of the country. They will soon have to undergo background checks.

It’s happening in Aiken County, South Carolina. Public school officials say potential school bus drivers will be subject to driving and criminal history checks.

This comes in the wake of several DUI arrests around the country involving school bus drivers. Now, potential school bus drivers in Aiken County will need to submit to a driver record check with the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles. Officials say they will also need to undergo criminal background checks with the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division.

One official says if a potential driver has anything on their driver record that has anything to do with DUI, the potential driver is immediately disqualified from consideration. That official also says potential drivers that have more than four points against their license will also be turned away.

The criminal background checks look for any arrests or convictions.

Each state has different policies and procedures. South Carolina has a ten-year back check period. This refers to the period of time in which a DUI is relevant for sentencing. It’s also known as a “washout” period.

School officials say they are always looking for drivers and currently have about 220 drivers, all of whom have undergone the background check process.

Many states require a background check for potential school bus drivers. Some states have changed or toughened up background check requirements. Unfortunately, some of those changes took place after an accident or arrest.

Part of the background check should obviously be looking at driving records. Many states do require a check on a potential school bus driver’s driving record as part of the pre-employment screening process. It’s one of the first steps that can be taken to ensure safety and security.