What’s New in Student Transportation This Year

Busing Begins

School buses will begin operation in time for your child’s in-person learning start dates.

Busing will begin on September 21 for the following students:

  • Children in Grades 3K and Pre-K
  • All grades in District 75 schools
  • All grades in Non-public schools
  • All grades in charter schools

School Bus Routes and Services for the 2020-21 School Year

Your child may be on the bus with students from different schools. Getting our students to and from school as safely as possible is as important as keeping them safe while they are in the building. Whether traveling by bus, public transportation, or other means, students will be expected to wear masks and practice social distancing, just as they will in and around their school.

Your Child’s Bus Route

Your child’s current transportation assignment and information is now available in your NYC Schools Account (NYCSA).

Contact your child’s school for help setting up a NYCSA account and to find out your child’s schedule, what days they will be in attendance, and their programming model.

School Bus Safety Procedures

School buses transporting students will follow guidelines outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the New York State Education Department with regard to all requirements, including cleaning and practicing safe social distancing. Buses will take the following steps:

  • Buses transporting students will be limited to one student per seat. Students from the same household may be seated with each other, as well as nurses and paraprofessionals assigned to students.
  • Windows will remain open and with the air system on the bus in the non-recirculating mode during transit; please dress your child appropriately.
  • With the exception of students who are exempted from facial coverings requirements, everyone in a school bus must wear face coverings at all times.
    • If a student cannot wear a face covering, increased social distancing around that child will be implemented.​

Seating on the bus will be clearly marked to guide students to where they can or cannot sit. Guidance will be clearly provided on the bus so that students and staff are able to maintain appropriate distance.

Busing Services Changes for the 2020-21 School Year

Due to the constraints of COVID-19, the DOE is prioritizing busing students to and from school this year, as a result, these busing services are not available in the 2020-21 school year:

  • Afterschool programs, except in cases when a student has specialized transportation and has submitted an application and been approved for transportation to an alternate afternoon drop-off location.
    • In these cases, busing is available only to the drop-off location; additional busing from the afterschool program to the student's residence will not be available. 
  • School field trips
  • Learning Bridges programs
  • On Federal holidays

Public Transportation and Other Alternatives

MetroCards

Your school will provide student MetroCards to students engaged in blended learning to travel to and from school. Some parents who must accompany students traveling for in-person blended learning are eligible for a MetroCard as well. Eligible adults are:

  • parents/caregivers of pre-K–6 busing students
  • parents/guardians of families in temporary housing.

When using public transportation, students will be expected to follow the same social distancing and face covering protocols as all New Yorkers.

Transportation Alternatives

Reimbursement will be available for families with special circumstances whose children are eligible for curb-to-school bus service, cannot use public transportation via MetroCard, and are awaiting bus service. For more information, speak with your school or email
TransportationReimbursement@schools.nyc.gov.

Health and Safety

Protective Face Coverings and Personal Protective Equipment

In accordance with New York State Department of Health (DOH), New York State Education Department (NYSED), and CDC recommendations, all students will be expected to wear a face covering (mask). If they do not have one, the bus operator will provide one. Drivers and attendants will also wear face coverings.

Only students who are exempted from facial coverings requirements due to their age or medical needs, or whose physical or mental health would be impaired by wearing a face covering, may ride the bus without one. In these cases, transportation options will be developed for these students on a case-by case-basis.

Ventilation

Buses will operate with the windows open and with the air system on the bus in the non-recirculating mode.

Cleaning and Disinfecting 

Each night, all school buses will be cleaned and disinfected using CDC recommended cleaning and disinfection protocols.

Student Health Screening 

Before sending children on a bus, family members are expected to screen their children’s health at home, including temperature checks, to make certain they are well enough to board a bus and attend school.

Bus personnel will not be administering screenings prior to the buses being boarded. For more information, see our Health and Safety page.

Bus Exiting Procedures

Students will exit school buses one row at a time in order to maintain social distancing. At all times, students should wear their face covering.

Behavioral Expectations on Buses 

All children riding school buses should follow health and safety guidelines at all times and follow the Behavioral Expectations and Guidance. If a student repeatedly fails to comply with health and safety protocol on buses, bus companies will notify the school for appropriate action.

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