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Seattle schools to roll out new transportation plan

August 24th, 2011 by Thea

After the implementation of the Student Assignment Plan, Seattle Public Schools is also changing the way K-8 students get to school.

The transportation map for John Hay Elementary. Orange is the walk zone, yellow the bus zone.

The new neighborhood-based transportation system is expected to streamline bus routs for attendance-area students and get kids to their neighborhood school in 25 minutes or less. This change will also save an estimate $4 million by using fewer buses and less gas.

“With more efficient routing, buses are less likely to encounter the traffic delays that occur on longer routes, so families will find departure and arrival times to be more reliable,” said Tom Bishop, SPS transportation manager. “In addition, the more streamlined routes will also benefit the environment by taking up to 80 buses off the roads and reducing the district’s carbon footprint.”

Students within the transportation zone, but outside the walk zone for a school will be eligible for district-provided transportation. There are an estimated 3,600 elementary students who live outside the new transportation zones. They will still be eligible for the following transportation:

  • Students who live within a half of a mile from the Transportation Zone boundary can walk to a yellow bus stop within the zone. Seats will be allocated on a space-available basis.
  • Community stops will be created so students can catch a yellow bus near an attendance area school and take it to another school.
  • Students who are no longer eligible for transportation will receive a guaranteed assignment to their attendance area school, if requested.
  • School bus routes will be assigned later this summer once all the students assignments are complete. Families should expect a letter later this month, prior to the start of the school year.

    For more information and to see the transportation zone for your school, click here. FAQ can be found here (.pdf)

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