11 Transportation Guidelines - Special Education


Chapter Revision date:02/21

11.0 Transportation Guidelines for Special Education

SDUSD offers several types of transportation


Transportation for special education students is considered a related service. California Education Code Section 56040 states that "every individual with exceptional needs who is eligible to receive special education instruction and related services under this part, shall receive that instruction and those services at no cost to his or her parents or, as appropriate, to him or her." Transportation is required if it is necessary for the student to access special instruction and/or services as determined by their IEP, including non-academic and extracurricular services and activities. As in the case of any special education program, this service must be provided to meet the criteria for a free, appropriate public education (FAPE).

Students receiving transportation through a Magnet Program are not receiving Special Education Transportation. This needs to be noted on the Team Action page.

Students participating in the Choice Program are not eligible for Special Education Transportation. This needs to be noted on the Team Action #7.

11.1 Determination of Eligibility for Special Education Transportation

Before an IEP Team can add a 'service' to a student's IEP there needs to be an informal 'assessment' or determination of eligibility. In order to evaluate this in SDUSD the IEP Team will complete the Transportation form in the Electronic IEP system which reviews the criteria for eligibility.

IDEA defines transportation to include:

  • Travel to and from school and between schools
  • Travel in and around school buildings
  • Specialized equipment (such as special or adapted buses, lifts, and ramps), if required to provide special transportation for a child with a disability

1. The IEP team must complete the Transportation form in the district's Electronic IEP system for each student being considered for special education transportation. This will result in a IEP team determination as to whether or not the student requires transportation services.

Note: Completing the Transportation form does not guarantee transportation services. The Transportation department makes the final determination.

  • The site nurse must participate in determining specialized transportation services for students designated as medically physically challenged, technology dependent or having significant health impairments.
  • Transportation department staff must participate in IEP team meetings if the team will discuss equipment needs, Level of service (LOS) needs, route considerations for students with specific medical needs or if a student has had previous behavioral issues on the bus. Contact your site Transportation Liaison.
  • Transportation department staff participation, when needed, may be accomplished via personal attendance at the IEP team meeting or by a conference call. 

2. After a IEP Team determination of eligibility for special education transportation as a related service is made, the Case Manager must document the discussion regarding eligibility by completing the Special Education Transportation area on page 1. 

  • If the parent is declining services and wishes to transport the student on their own this will need to be documented in,
    • (Eligible for special education transportation services but parent elects to decline special education transportation services, opting to participate in.)


3. The Case Manager will then complete and follow the guidelines on the Transportation Form F-12. (Forms/Links) A sample form is also available. No parent signature is required on the form. Incomplete forms will be returned to you, potentially causing a delay in requested transportation. DO NOT fax the form to the Transportation Dept.

During the COVID 19 shutdown, F12 forms and IEP documentation should be emailed to Naomi Lewis at nlewis1@sandi.net instead of faxing to the Special Education Office.

4. Parents must be informed that they are responsible to provide the necessary supervision and direction to ensure their child's safe and timely arrival at the scheduled stop 10 minutes before the anticipated arrival of the school bus. Likewise, the parent must ensure the supervision is available at least 10 minutes before the anticipated arrival of the school bus in the afternoon.

  • Pick-up or release of a rider will not be made on private property or at a location determined to be unsafe.

11.2 Mileage Reimbursement

Mileage reimbursement to parents is considered a mode of service outside of the guidelines for typical service to students with special needs and must be approved by the Special Education Manager Operations before it can be discussed at an IEP meeting. In rare cases where it is determined by the IEP team, after consultation with special education administration, that the district elects to reimburse the parent for transportation they provide for their child to attend a school, a specified program or a specified provision of services, the decision to offer reimbursement must be documented on the Team Action page of the student's IEP.

Appropriate staff must complete the "F-13" reimbursement form and submit it for approval by a Special Education Program Manager. The F-13 is then forwarded to the Special Ed office, email to Leanne Rainer, llehn@sandi.net. . Contact your district level support person for further Information.

Contact Information:

Fax 619-725-7246


Ed Center Annex 6A