Bus Driver Training
All individuals interested in obtaining a Professional Illinois School Bus Driver Permit in Illinois must attend and pass an Initial School Bus Driver Training class.
Annually all Professional School Bus Drivers in Illinois holding a valid permit, must attend a Refresher Class.
There is a $10 training fee per driver for both the initial and refresher courses. Please call ROE 33 at (309) 734-6822 to register for these courses.
New Applicant for School Bus Driver Permit
The guidelines for new applicants are as follows:
- The prospective employer conducts a Pre-Employment Interview with applicant and, if accepted, schedules an appointment for fingerprinting and provides a medical form for applicant to have completed.
- The applicant takes the medical form to the physician conducting the examination. The physician will give a copy of the Medical Examiner's Certificate form to the applicant, keeping a copy for his own files and sending a copy to the employer.
- The applicant or his prospective employer arranges an appointment with the Regional Superintendent to receive the initial training required through the Illinois State Board of Education. Upon completion of fingerprinting, medical examination and initial training, the applicant returns to the employer.
- The employer requests the applicant to provide a three year driving history to determine his/her eligibility to receive a school bus driver permit.
The employer completes the Employers' Certification form certifying the following:
- Applicant is 21 years of age.
- Applicant has successfully completed a physical (within 90 days prior to date of application).
- Applicant has completed the pre-employment interview.
- Applicant has passed the Illinois specific criminal background investigation.
- Applicant has completed the initial training course.
If the employer is participating in the Third Party Certification Program, the employer will conduct the behind-the-wheel examination of the applicant.
The applicant goes to a Secretary of State Drivers License Facility to obtain a school bus permit and appropriate drivers license and presents the following documents to the facility personnel:
- Three forms of identification containing the following information: name, date of birth, social security number, Illinois residency and signature.
- Appropriate fees.
- Completed Certification Form from the employer.
- Proof of three year driving history if the applicant, resided in a state other than Illinois.
- Third Party Certification (when appropriate).
The facility personnel will conduct the following tests:
- Eligibility check.
- Vision test (when required).
- Written test (as required).
- Pre-trip test.
- Behind-the-wheel examination in the type of vehicle which the applicant will be driving. (Proof of Third Party Testing will exempt the applicant from taking the driving test).
It is the responsibility of the employer to maintain copies of all records verified on the certification (2 years). If all requirements are met, the facility will issue the appropriate drivers license, if required, and the Illinois School Bus Driver Permit.
Bus Refresher Course
A new state rule change gives school bus drivers more flexibility in the process of keeping their permits active. The amendment lets bus drivers take the annual refresher course requirement up to 60 days before their annual refresher expiration date without changing that date.
All regular and substitute bus drivers are required to attend one of these sessions to keep their driving permit valid. An annual refresher course must be successfully completed prior to applying for a new permit. If a driver has a conflict with the date scheduled for his/her employing district, they are welcome to attend another class elsewhere.
There will be an $8 training fee per driver for all refresher and initial courses taken by bus drivers for your district/company. We will send you an invoice and certification after your drivers have completed their training courses.
Re-Applicant for Illinois School Bus Driver Permit
- The driver will receive a re-application letter from the Office of the Secretary of State approximately 70 days prior to the expiration of his/her school bus driver permit. In addition, the employer will also receive a quarterly report identifying the expiration dates of all drivers’ licenses and permits of his/her drivers.
- The driver contacts his employer to arrange an appointment for his annual refresher course required through the Illinois State Board of Education. The employer will also give the driver a medical form to have completed.
- The driver takes the medical form to the physician conducting the examination. The physician will give a copy of the Medical Examiner's Certificate form to the driver, keeping a copy for his own files and sending a copy to the employer.
- Upon completion of the medical examination and annual refresher course, the driver returns to the employer.
- The employer verifies that the driver's license has not expired and the school bus driver permit has not expired for more than 30 days.
The employer completes the Employer's Certification form certifying the following:
- The driver has successfully completed the annual refresher course on __________________________.
- The driver has completed a favorable physical (within 90 days prior to the date of re-application).
The employer mails the Employer's Certification form and a $4.00 check/money order made payable to the Secretary of State to cover the cost of re-application to:
Office of the Secretary of State
Driver Services Department
School Bus Safety Section
2701 South Dirksen Parkway
Springfield, IL 62723
It is the responsibility of the employer to maintain copies of all records verified on the certification. Upon review and processing, the new school bus driver permit will be mailed directly to the applicant.