School boards of community consolidated districts, community unit districts, consolidated districts, consolidated high school districts, optional elementary unit districts, combined high school ‑ unit districts, combined school districts if the combined district includes any district which was previously required to provide transportation, and any newly created elementary or high school districts resulting from a high school ‑ unit conversion, a unit to dual conversion, or a multi‑unit conversion if the newly created district includes any area that was previously required to provide transportation shall provide free transportation for pupils residing at a distance of one and one‑half miles or more from any school to which they are assigned for attendance maintained within the district, except for those pupils for whom the school board shall certify to the State Board of Education that adequate transportation for the public is available.
Each school board may provide free transportation for any pupil residing within 1 1/2 miles from the school attended where conditions are such that walking constitutes a serious hazard to the safety of the pupil due to vehicular traffic effective on the date that the Illinois Department of Transportation grants written approval.
The school board of any school district that provides any school bus or conveyance for transporting pupils to and from the public schools shall afford transportation, without cost, for children who attend any school other than a public school, who reside at least 1 1/2 miles from the school attended, and who reside on or along the highway constituting the regular route of such public school bus or conveyance, such transportation to extend from some point on the regular route nearest or most easily accessible to their homes to and from the school attended, or to or from a point on such regular route which is nearest or most easily accessible to the school attended by such children.
On or before August 15, annually, the board clerk or the secretary of the district shall certify upon forms prescribed by the State Superintendent of Education the district's claim for reimbursement for the school year ended on June 30 next preceding. The district superintendent of schools shall check all transportation claims to ascertain compliance with the prescribed standards and upon his/her approval shall certify not later than August 15 to the State Superintendent of Education the district's report of claims for reimbursement.