A bus is a motor vehicle constructed or adapted with 15 or more seats or registered as a school bus or kindergarten bus.
If your organization uses vehicles that meet the definition of a school bus, anyone who drives these vehicles must have an S endorsement on their driver’s licence. If you have a Class 1, 2 or 4 driver’s licence and want to drive a school bus in Alberta, you must take the School Bus Driver Improvement Program to get the S endorsement on your driver’s licence.
You must have a valid Alberta driver’s licence to get the S endorsement. You are not eligible if you have a suspended driver's licence. See the School Bus Policy for more information.
New school bus drivers
All new Class 1 or Class 2 school bus drivers must:
- complete Mandatory Entry-Level Training and pass all required testing
- have an S endorsement on their driver’s licence
Existing school bus drivers
If you drive a vehicle that meets the new definition of a school bus, you must have an S endorsement on your driver's licence by July 31, 2020.
How it works
Step 1. Complete classroom training
You must participate in a classroom training session delivered by a licensed driver training school in Alberta. Each student is provided with a copy of the School Bus Operator’s manual as a reference and study guide. The classroom training is a minimum of 15 hours and includes 5 series:
- Series 1: School Bus Inspection and Maintenance
- Series 2: Loading, Unloading and Transporting Passengers, and Passenger Management
- Series 3: Bus Manoeuvres and Defensive Driving
- Series 4: Emergencies, Bus Evacuations, First Aid, Emergency Equipment, and Mechanical Breakdown
- Series 5: Passengers with Disabilities, Mobility Aids and Child Safety Seats
Step 2. Pass knowledge assessments
Knowledge assessments are completed under the direct supervision of the driving instructor after each series. You have 3 attempts to pass each knowledge assessment.
Step 3: Complete practical training
Once you complete the classroom training and pass all 5 series knowledge assessments, you must participate in the practical training session.
Step 4. Pass pre-trip inspection assessment and on-road assessment
- You must pass a pre-trip inspection assessment.
- You must pass an on-road assessment.
- If you fail the pre-trip inspection assessment, you will be able to continue to attempt until successful, pending time availability.
- If you fail the on-road assessment, the driving instructor will determine what additional training is required before a further attempt is made. Any re-assessment must be conducted on a different day.
- Once you pass both assessments, you will be issued a Notice of Driver Education Course Completion form.
Step 5. Go to registry agent.
Bring the Notice of Driver Education Course Completion form to any Alberta registry agent to get the S endorsement added to your driver’s licence. A government fee and a service charge will apply. Your new driver’s licence will be mailed to your address with the S endorsement indicated next to your licence class.
There is no renewal requirement for the S endorsement.
MELT extension for school bus drivers
The deadline to apply has now passed and applications for the School Bus Extension are no longer being accepted.
New school bus drivers must refer to the Overview section of this page for information on the Class 2 MELT requirements.
Connect with MELT and Licensing Standards:
MELT and Licensing Standards
1st Floor, Twin Atria Building
4999 98 Avenue
Edmonton, Alberta T6B 2X3
MELT and Licensing Standards
1st Floor, Willowglen Business Park
803 Manning Road NE
Calgary, Alberta T2E 7M8
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