School Bus Drivers Must Undergo Background Checks

Board of Public Education approved new rule this week

By Justin Franz

The state Board of Public Education is requiring every school bus driver in the state to undergo a criminal background check.

The Billings Gazette reports the board approved the rule on Thursday after a legislative audit found that 64 of the state’s 1,435 drivers during the 2011-12 school year had a criminal history, including two with drunken driving convictions within the past three years.

The Legislative Audit Committee recommended the Office of Public Instruction require background checks for all drivers.

Drivers also must have a safe driving record, which means having no more than one moving traffic violation in each of the past three years, no drunken driving convictions in the past three years and no conviction resulting in the suspension of their driver’s license in the past five years.

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