Potential Yellow Bus Service Disruption: Information for Families
If your child takes a yellow bus to school, please be aware service may be disrupted this fall due to a potential bus driver strike. We know that this would be extremely disruptive to students and families, and we continue to hope a strike can be avoided. However, as it is a possibility, our priority is to do what we can to minimize disruption for our families and students, especially those that are most vulnerable, and to communicate updates to our families as we learn more.
We are preparing alternative transportation options for families whose bus routes would be affected in the event there is a strike. These options include emergency MetroCards for all impacted families, which can be provided by your child’s school, and additional options for some families, including pre-paid rideshare and transportation reimbursement (please see below for eligibility information). Prior to the start of school, we will share details and next steps for each of these options. Our top priority is to ensure that every student, including our most vulnerable, can continue attending school without interruption.
For the latest information, please revisit this webpage or call the Office of Pupil Transportation Call Center at 718-392-8855.
Potential Yellow Bus Service Disruption: Frequently Asked Questions
Which bus companies might be affected if there is a strike?
The following bus companies might be affected if a strike occurs. Families can see the company that operates their bus route in their NYCSA account at schoolsaccount.nyc or by talking with the transportation coordinator at their school. Please note, our call center cannot give out your child’s route over the phone.
- ALL AMERICAN SCHOOL BUS CORP. (AM)
- BOBBY'S BUS CO. INC. (BB)
- BORO TRANSIT, INC. (BO)
- G.V.C. LTD. (GC)
- GRANDPA'S BUS CO., INC. (GB)
- HOYT TRANSPORTATION CORP. (AP)
- IC BUS INC. (IA)
- LEESEL TRANSPORTATION CORP (LK)
- LOGAN TRANSPORTATION SYSTEMS (LP)
- LORISSA BUS SERVICE INC. (LS)
- MAR-CAN TRANSPORT CO. INC (MW)
- NYC SCHOOL BUS UMBRELLA SERVICES (NT)
- PHILLIP BUS CORP (FP)
- PIONEER TRANSPORTATION CORP (PT)
- SNT BUS INC (NW)
- VAN TRANS LLC (VN)
Will schools be closed if there is a strike?
No, NYCPS schools will remain open and continue to serve our students, even if a strike occurs.
What is the likelihood my child’s busing will be disrupted? How will I know if this happens?
If a strike takes place, we believe it will likely involve about half of our bus drivers and attendants. We will post a map of potentially impacted routes on this webpage the week of August 28. Additionally, if your child will be affected, you will receive an automated call, email, and text message from us once we know a strike is happening, as well as a second set of notifications on the first morning of interrupted bus service. Notifications will go to the contact information provided to us by your school, so it is important to ensure your contact information is up to date with your school and on your NYC Schools Account (NYCSA).
How do I create a NYCSA account?
To create a NYCSA account, please visit the NYC Schools Account homepage. From there, you can create a basic account. To link the account to your student’s record (which includes their transportation information), please call your child’s school for support beginning August 28.
How do I update my contact information in NYCSA?
If you are a parent who lives with your child, or if you are a custodial guardian, you can update the contact information for yourself or other additional adults on your child’s record in your NYC Schools Account, using the Emergency Contact page. You can also update your preferred written or spoken language.
If my child is impacted, how can we access MetroCards?
Your child’s school can provide emergency MetroCards for both you and your student. These MetroCards work across all MTA buses and subways for four trips daily per card, plus transfers, between the hours of 5:30AM and 8PM.
If we are taking public transit to school, how can we plan out our route?
You can utilize the MTA’s Trip Planner or other internet mapping services to view routes to your child’s school. These sites allow you to set preferences related to form of transportation (for example, subway versus bus), transportation accessibility, and specific departure or arrival times.
Beyond a MetroCard, what alternative transportation options is my child eligible for?
All impacted students and families can access emergency MetroCards from their child’s school. Certain groups of students will also have access to pre-paid rideshare (including wheelchair-accessible vehicles) and transportation reimbursement (for use of taxis or personal vehicles). Specifically, these alternatives will be available to:
- Students with Disabilities who have transportation recommended on an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or 504 Accommodation Plan (504), or have an approved medical exception from the Office of Pupil Transportation
- Students in Temporary Housing or Foster Care who receive yellow bus service, including students in shelters, domestic violence shelters, families living with others due to economic or financial hardship (doubled-up), and students transitioning to permanent housing
- Students with an approved transportation exception, as defined on our transportation web page, schools.nyc.gov/transportationexceptions.
What is pre-paid rideshare?
Pre-paid rideshare is a car service that will take you — or another adult — and your child to and from school each day. An adult must travel with your child. For each eligible child, your driver will provide two rides for you in both the morning and afternoon (for a total of four rides per day). In the morning, after your child is dropped off at school, the rideshare driver can take you to any destination of your choice, whether it's your home, workplace, or another location. In the afternoon, the process is reversed: the driver will pick you up from your chosen location, drive to the school to pick up your child, and then take both of you home. There's no need for you to arrange separate transportation to or from the school. These extra rides are included in the service and are free for you.
Rideshare is free for eligible families and does not require the family to pay upfront and wait for reimbursement. For this reason, we recommend that eligible families consider using rideshare instead of seeking transportation reimbursement. Reimbursements for self-arranged transportation can take weeks to process, while the rideshare service is immediate and cost-free.
Prior to the start of the school year, we will update this webpage with details and next steps for accessing both rideshare and reimbursement. Once school begins, we encourage you to contact the Transportation Coordinator at your child’s school to discuss which alternative transportation option works best for your child and family.
What happens if my child arrives late to school because they are impacted by the bus strike?
Students affected by a bus strike will be excused for up to two hours of lateness due to delayed or extended travel time.
Can impacted students stay home and learn virtually?
No, NYC Public Schools will not be offering virtual learning for students impacted by a strike. Our focus is on ensuring all students can get to school with as little disruption as possible to their regular school schedule. Families should use the alternative transportation options to bring their children to/from school.
If there is a strike, how long should I expect it to last? How will I know when it ends?
Unfortunately, we cannot predict how long a strike would last if one occurred. Our priority is to do what we can to minimize disruption for our families and students, especially those that are most vulnerable. We are working closely with the city to monitor these negotiations and will continue to share updates with families as we learn more.
How are NYC Public Schools working to prevent a strike?
These labor negotiations are between the drivers and the bus companies they work for. Our priority is to do what we can to minimize disruption for our families and students, especially those that are most vulnerable. We are working closely with the city to monitor these negotiations and to plan accordingly, and we will continue to share updates with families as we learn more.
What steps are New York City Public Schools taking to ensure impacted students arrive safely at school?
We are working with the city and our partners at the New York City Police Department (NYPD) to closely monitor this situation and to engage all necessary resources to ensure the safe commute of our students. In the event of a bus strike, NYPD will station additional transit officers where we anticipate increased numbers of students using public transportation and/or walking to school.
Will field trips and/or after school programs be impacted in the case of a strike?
PSAL will proceed as planned, and if your school has a game that may be impacted, the PSAL office will reach out directly on next steps. We will share guidance on field trips and other after school programming before the start of the school year.
See what's new in student transportation for this school year.
In accordance with Chancellor’s Regulation A-801 (see below for regulation with translations) , the DOE provides transportation to all eligible New York City students in public, charter, and non-public schools. In partnership with the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) and our school age and preschool bus companies, our mission is to ensure safe and reliable transportation to and from school.
See Transportation Rights for what you and your child can expect from DOE transportation services.
See Transportation Guide for a summarized introduction to transportation options, eligibility, and more.
Your school can provide you with your child's student ID.
Non-public school parents: Please contact your school to get information about your child’s bus information.
DOE employees: visit Student Profile for student school and bus information or see Transportation Resources for Schools on the InfoHub for additional information.
Note: Access to the Student Transportation Search page is no longer available.
Why is the Bus Late?
Sometimes buses are delayed because of traffic congestion or mechanical failure. Check our bus delays page to see if your child's route has been affected.
Types of Transportation Service
Transportation services that are available to families vary by school and by each child’s eligibility for those services. Speak with your school if you have questions about the available options.
- At minimum, schools will provide student MetroCards to eligible students
- Schools may also offer stop-to-school bus service if sufficient students meet busing eligibility criteria
- Curb-to-school or specialized bus service is provided to students whose medical, health, or disability-related conditions or special circumstances prevent them from being able to walk or utilize other forms of transportation to get to and from school.
Full-fare student MetroCards are provided at no cost to eligible students and are good on MTA subways and non-express buses.
Student MetroCards are different from regular MetroCards. A student MetroCard has three trips and three transfers.
(Subway + bus = one trip and one transfer)
Visit our MetroCards page to learn more.
Stop-to-School Bus Service
School bus transportation refers to picking up and dropping off one or more students at designated bus stops. To use this service, your school must participate in the bus program and your child must be eligible.
Contact your school for more information on school bus service.
Curb-to-School or Specialized Bus Service
This type of transportation utilizes vehicles that are equipped to meet the transportation accommodations listed on a student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) or 504 Accommodations Plan and have a trained driver and an attendant on-board. Curb-to-school specialized bus services pick up and drop off the student at the safest locations near the student's home.
- Students in grades K-12 with an IEP that recommends curb-to-school transportation
- Students in grades K-12 with a 504 Accommodations Plan that lists curb-to-school transportation as a required service
- Students in grades K-12 with a medical exception approved by the Office of Pupil Transportation
Certain transportation accommodations must be reviewed and approved by the Office of School Health prior to being arranged.
See Transportation Rights for additional information.
Requests for an Alternate Drop-Off Location
Some families receiving specialized transportation may need their child to be dropped off on certain days at a different location from their home address, such as therapy sessions, childcare provider, or after school program.
These requests are subject to availability and may not be provided based on the location of the requested drop-off and other factors; in general, requests for alternate afternoon drop-offs in a borough that is not in the same borough as the school or the home address will not be approved. These requests generally take around 10 business days to take effect. Once approved, requests for same-day drop-off changes cannot be arranged.
Alternate afternoon bus drop-off arrangements can be requested online. Please visit the Transportation Support Hub for more information about alternate PM drop-off service and to submit a request.
Early Childhood Transportation
Some children ages 0-5 are eligible for school bus transportation:
- Children ages 6 weeks to age 3 can receive Early Intervention (EI) services if they have disabilities and/or developmental delays, and transportation needs are identified by the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) on their Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) .
- Children ages 3-5 with preschool Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) that recommend Special Class or Special Class in an Integrated Setting, and who are attending a program in a public school or a New York State-approved preschool special education program.
- Children ages 3-5 with a medical, health, or disability-related condition that requires curb-to-school transportation. Learn more about submitting a medical exception.
If a child is eligible for curb-to-school transportation based on the above criteria, the child will be provided busing and will ride in a car seat.
See Transportation Rights for additional information.
Transitioning to Kindergarten and School-Age Services
While transportation for children with preschool IEPs is provided based on the program recommendations on the IEP, that is not the case for kindergarten and school-age children. The school-age IEP must specifically recommend curb-to-school transportation in order for the DOE to provide it. Additionally, children will not automatically ride in a car seat – it must be recommended on the IEP.
Learn more at the moving to kindergarten page.
For more information visit our specialized transportation visit, the DOE's Specialized Transportation page.