Bus Transportation Request – New for the 2022-23 School Year
If your student will be utilizing bus services for the 2022-23 school year, you will need to complete a Bus Transportation Request located in the Extended Parent Portal. Previously, all students who were eligible for neighborhood transportation were automatically assigned to a bus. This created extremely long student lists and provided an unrealistic student ridership count. By having a better understanding of how many students intend on using bus services, we can better utilize our available resources. Be sure to watch for alerts and emails in the coming weeks that will provide more information about this process.
Continuing Driver and Paraprofessional Shortage
Over the past five years there has been a critical driver and paraprofessional shortage across the nation in the school transportation industry. This shortage has been exacerbated during the COVID 19 pandemic and continues today. Academy District 20 has not been immune to this negative impact on our transportation department.
We frequently utilize a combination of relief drivers and office staff to run many of our routes. This results in an inability to support our full route schedule, loss of support for field trips and other extracurricular activities, and interferes with or delays other department activities.
Transportation leadership has instituted a comprehensive incentive program to assist with recruiting and retention
An additional attendance incentive
An incentive to staff who refer a successfully hired candidate
Review of drivers/paraprofessionals/mechanics pay scales
Reevaluation of school walk zones
Bell time adjustment study (recommendations deferred for one year)
Efficient Use of Resources
We will adhere to set Walk Zones per Administrative Policy EEA E 1:
During a number of strategic planning sessions and policy reviews, it was discovered that there are areas in which Transportation is providing service within designated Walk Zones.
We can reduce the resources needed by adhering to Walk Zones and also eliminate inequity as there are a number of neighborhoods receiving a service not available to all.
We have re-evaluated all school walk zones. Based on this review, there will be some neighborhoods that previously received transportation services that will no longer qualify. Many of these areas were receiving service due to a lack of sidewalks, walk paths, traffic lights, crosswalks, etc., and those conditions have now been corrected. Additionally, some areas are affected by a recent review of our Bus Service Index which evaluates school walk zone safety. We will notify affected families of any changes.
We have also completed a re-evaluation of all route stops. This may result in some stops being moved or eliminated as we streamline our routes. In all cases, bus stops will adhere to our policy as outlined in Administrative Policy EEA E 1.
We all have a shared responsibility in making sure students travel to and from school safely.
Responsible for knowing and following safety rules when using the transportation system
Responsible for arriving at their assigned school bus stop location at the designated time
Parents and Guardians
Responsible for ensuring their child arrives at assigned locations for transportation
Responsible for knowing their school's start times and transportation departure/arrival times allowing enough walking or driving time to get to school or the assigned school bus stop location
Responsible for educating their child on the proper safety measures to be taken while walking, biking or riding in provided transportation; this should include safe walk routes, areas to avoid, proper procedures for crossing at intersections, observation of traffic signs, bicycle safety, use of seat belts, school bus safety rules, and any other safety practices to ensure the safety of their child
Be sure to review this guide on walking safely
Academy District 20
Responsible for providing a safe bus stop location as well as a safe, efficient ride to and from school or other district activities
Responsible for enforcing conduct while riding on the bus
Bell Time Adjustment (School start and dismissal times)
We are currently studying a three-tier bell time system which allows more efficient use of transportation resources for multiple schools and grade levels. A three-tier system has the potential to reduce our number of routes by up to 15%.
Bell Time adjustments recommendations have been deferred until the 2023-24 school year.
If you have questions, feel free to contact us!