School Buses

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Preventive Maintenance Manual for Virginia School Buses

The Preventive Maintenance Manual (PDF) includes daily pre-trip inspections, inspection schedules and guidelines, shop records and inventory control, and record keeping materials to assist local school divisions in meeting Board of Education transportation regulation 8VAC20-70-380.

COVID-19 Resources for School Transportation (Word) – Cleaning and disinfecting practices for school buses.

Public School Bus Specifications

Purchasing School Buses

VDOE enters into contracts for the purchase of public school buses through a rigorous competitive bid process conducted by the Department of General Services (


Division superintendents are required annually to certify that insurance providing the required coverage has been obtained for all vehicles to be used in transporting school children and school personnel. These requirements are covered in Sections 22.1-188 through 22.1-198, Section 46.2-472, and Section 38.2-2206, Code of Virginia.

Certification must be submitted to the Superintendent of Public Instruction on or before August 1 of each year.

School divisions must use the Web-based reporting system (SSWS) to certify insurance coverage. This certification is located under Crash/Incident Reporting.

Pilot Projects

When a new technology, piece of equipment, or component is desired to be applied to the school bus, it must have the VDOE approval. It is the responsibility of the vendor to ask school divisions to participate in a pilot project. The pilot project will need to be tested and completed in multiple regions of the state before it can be forwarded to the specifications committee to be added to the bid list.

Procedures for Pilot Projects (PDF), revised September 19, 2014. Includes application process, guidelines, application form and reporting information.