Title 17. Education
Chapter 2. Teachers and Employees
Part II. Tenure
Subpart C. School Bus Operators
17:500 Sick leave for school bus operators; minimum pay for substitute
A. The term “school bus operator”, as used in this Section, shall mean any individual who operates a school bus transporting children under the supervision of the public school system of the state of Louisiana.
B. (1) All school bus operators employed by the parish and the city school boards of this state shall be entitled to and shall be allowed a minimum of ten days absence per school year because of personal illness or because of other emergencies, without loss of pay. Such sick leave when not used in any year shall be accumulated to the credit of the school bus operator without limitation. Provided that when a school bus operator is absent for six or more consecutive days because of personal illness, he shall be required to present a certificate from a physician, physician assistant providing health care services in accordance with R.S. 37:1360.28, or nurse practitioner providing health care services in accordance with R.S. 37:913 certifying such illness; provided, further, that the parish and city school boards are authorized to adopt such rules and regulations as are necessary relative to the use of such sick leave, either current or accumulated, for emergencies. The parish and city school boards may grant additional sick leave, without loss of pay, or with such reduction of pay as they may establish and fix.
(2) The minimum of ten days of sick leave provided in this Subsection shall be allowed based on a school bus operator beginning work at the beginning of a school year. In the case of a school bus operator who begins work in the first month of a school year, ten days shall be allowed; in the case of a school bus operator who begins work in the second month of a school year, nine days shall be allowed; in the case of a school bus operator who begins work in the third month of a school year, eight days shall be allowed; in the case of a school bus operator who begins work in the fourth month of a school year, seven days shall be allowed; in the case of a school bus operator who begins work in the fifth month of a school year, six days shall be allowed; in the case of a school bus operator who begins work in the sixth month of a school year, five days shall be allowed; in the case of a school bus operator who begins work in the seventh month of a school year, four days shall be allowed; and, in the case of a school bus operator who begins work in the eighth month or thereafter of a school year, three days shall be allowed.
(3) Upon the retirement of any school bus operator, or upon his death prior to retirement, his employer shall pay to such school bus operator, or to his heirs or assigns, sick leave which has accrued to such school bus operator, but which remains unused at the time of his retirement or at the time of his death if prior to retirement, not to exceed twenty-five days of such unused sick leave. Such pay shall be at the rate of pay received by the school bus operator at the time of retirement or death prior to retirement; provided that any parish or city school board may pay such unused sick leave beyond twenty-five days at its discretion.
C. (1) Each substitute school bus operator, substituting for a regular school bus operator who is on sick or emergency leave, shall be paid by the employing school board a daily sum for each day’s actual operation of the bus, which shall be not less than sixty-five percent of the daily rate of pay being paid the regular bus operator, to be computed by dividing the annual pay of the regular operator by the number of school days in the regularly scheduled session, exclusive of any compensation or mileage allowance for use of a privately owned bus.
(2)(a) The provisions of this Subsection for the compensation of a substitute school bus operator are applicable and may be used only when the regular operator is on leave and is expected to return to his route.
(b)(i) Whenever a vacancy occurs on a route due to death, resignation, retirement, or the expiration of the regular operator’s approved leave or a new route is established, the route shall be filled with a regular school bus operator as provided in R.S. 17:493.1 no later than the following school year unless the route is consolidated or eliminated.
(ii) A substitute bus operator may only be used as a temporary measure until a permanent operator can be appointed to a route. A substitute operator may not drive a route for a period that exceeds the end of the school year during which the operator began driving the route. The vacant route shall be filled in accordance with R.S. 17:493.1.
(c) If an operator is on approved leave, his route shall not be considered a vacant route. A substitute shall be used to drive a route for an operator on approved leave regardless of the length of time of the approved leave.
Added by Acts 1954, No. 146, §§ 1, 2. Amended by Acts 1958, No. 398, § 1; Acts 1960, No. 255, § 2; Acts 1970, No. 646, § 1; Acts 1984, No. 129, § 1; Acts 1985, No. 369, § 1; Acts 1990, No. 1077, § 1; Acts 1993, No. 826, § 1, eff. June 22, 1993; Acts 1995, No. 948, § 1; Acts 1999, No. 663, § 1, eff. July 1, 1999; Acts 2020, 2nd Ex.Sess., No. 34, § 1, eff. Oct. 28, 2020.