IMPORTANT SCHOOL BUS ENDORSEMENT INFORMATION
Effective September 30, 2006, the Motor Carrier Safety Act of 1999 requires that all individuals operating a Nebraska School Bus designed to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) or that has a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more have an S – school bus endorsement on their CDL (Note: This date was originally Sept 30, 2005, but was extended by the federal government). Applicants will be required to pass a written and drive test for the S endorsement (see below for exceptions). The information for this written test is in Section 10A in the Nebraska Manual for Commercial Driver’s Licensing.
In order to take advantage of the federal law that allows drivers with two years of school bus experience and a good driving record to waive the drive test for this endorsement and to avoid long lines at the exam offices on September 30, 2006, the DMV will begin issuing the S endorsement on October 1, 2004. After September 30, 2006, the statutory authority to waive the drive test will end and all applicants adding the S endorsement will be required to pass the written and drive tests.
DMV encourages drivers who are renewing their Class D or E school bus permits and those applying for new Class D or E school bus permits to add the S endorsement to their CDL at the same time. School bus drivers who have two years of school bus experience and a good driving record must present a completed School Bus Endorsement Drive Test Waiver form to waive the drive test; the written test will be required. Drivers who do not present the School Bus Endorsement Drive Test Waiver form and/or those who do not have two years of school bus experience and a good driving record will be required to pass the written and drive tests for the S endorsement. Please have a school bus available in case a drive test is required.
Drivers adding the S endorsement to their CDL will be charged a fee of $10 unless it is the year the CDL expires. In that case, the cost to renew the CDL will be $55.00. Once the S endorsement is on the CDL – no additional testing will be required to retain the endorsement upon renewal of the CDL.
As a further clarification to applicants – all school bus drivers will still be required to obtain an annual Nebraska school bus permit, pass the written school bus test each year and pass the school bus drive test in the year that their CDL expires. The only change is that individuals desiring a Class D or E school bus permit will study the brochure entitled Section 10 – School Buses in conjunction with the Department of Education’s Pupil Transportation Handbook. Applicants renewing or applying for a Class A, B or C school bus permit will NOT be required to have an S endorsement on their licenses and it will not be necessary for them to review the brochure entitled Section 10 – School Buses prior to obtaining their annual school bus permits.
If you have any questions regarding this matter, please contact the DMV Examining Division at 402/471-3861.