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Bus Route FAQ

What is my bus stop?
Please visit the Transfinder system.

New identification for our buses this year.
We are using your bus number as a route number. In the event that a substitute bus is being used, the permanent bus/route number will be displayed on the placard on the side of the bus.

What time is my stop – how early do I have to get there?
We ask the students to be at the stop 5 minutes before the posted time. This will allow for differences in clock time and assure students are in place as the bus arrives. ** They can expect the buses to be delayed the first week of school. Traffic at the elementary schools makes departing the campus in the morning very difficult. This delay impacts the whole route. Please be patient and the schedules will even out usually by the end of the week.

If I miss the bus can I just follow and stop the bus to let my child ride?
Students should be a the stop at least 5 minutes before the scheduled time. Drivers are not to make extra stops and will receive disciplinary action if they do. Stopping in an unauthorized area can cause accidents and is not safe. The student may board at the next stop but may receive a warning. This should not happen again.

Why is the bus late and my student isn’t home at the time posted?
The first few days at the schools are very confusing. Teachers and bus drivers take extra time to make sure students are on the correct bus. Sometimes students are put on the wrong bus and the driver will have to return the student to the school. Parents should make sure the teachers know what bus to place the child on and should try and teach the student the location of their stops. Parents can have this information on a card that is in the child’s backpack. Students should know their full names and address if possible.

The bus stop is too early. Can the bus come later? (or reverse)
Bus routes are designed to arrive at the campuses in order for students to get to class on time. Elementary routes drop at 7:20, MS no later than 8:05 and HS from 8:35 to 8:55. Stops are posted on the website August 18th. Parents are encouraged to check routes right before the first day of school for any changes. Routes will not be changed within the first 2 weeks. Notes will be issued for route changes. These notes will usually be sent home in the afternoon and allow for 2 days notice for the parents/students.

Why is my student the first one on the bus and the last one off?
Routes are built to go from the furthest point toward the school. In the afternoon, it is reversed for efficiency. To go to the furthest point and backtrack is not efficient.

There is a stop sign in front of my house and bus has to stop anyway. Why can’t they just open the door and let my child on?
We stop at many stop signs along the way and we do not stop at every one for loading purposes. Elementary students have up to a ¼ mile walk to stops. Middle school and high school have up to a ½ mile walk to stops. We make stops centralized as much as possible based on where the children are. If you would like to request a stop, we can take your information but we will not even be looking to change routes until at least the third week of school. We have to concentrate on areas that have no stops or incoming PK / Bilingual students new to the district. There is no guarantee that you will be given a stop but we can request one.

The stop is around the corner and I can’t see my child.
We can only suggest that you take the opportunity to walk your child down to the stop. Please make sure to be there at the stop on the side the bus loads at least 5 minutes before the scheduled time.

What kind of checks does the district do on these people that are driving my child?
All bus drivers must have a good driving record, obtain a commercial drivers license, pass a yearly DOT physical, pass a pre-employment drug test and be placed in a random drug testing pool that is done 4 times a year. In addition, the district requires a background check and fingerprinting. After going through all the first steps mentioned, they have extensive training with our staff to help them learn to drive a bus, Our supervisors will not turn a driver loose until they feel confident that person is a safe driver. The employees all attend monthly training. When a person drives a bus, they do it for the love of the children. When your child is on the bus, we treat them like they are our own and will not let anything happen to them.

What if I live in an apartment complex?
We do not usually come into apartment complexes. We will pick up at leasing offices unless there is a hazard that prevents us from doing this. Complexes with small entrances or leasing areas can expect to come to the road to load and unload the bus. Special needs students that live in apartment complexes can expect to load like the regular ed buses unless the student has an orthopedic issue that requires wheelchairs, walkers, or braces. Sight impaired students will be dealt with on an individual basis.

Do I need to register to ride the bus or pay for the service?
No. Students can ride the bus as needed. There is no charge for the bus service.

If I don’t get a bus, how is my student getting to school?
If a student is not an eligible rider, parents are responsible for making arrangement for their children to get to and from school. Some elementary campuses have YMCA after-school care programs. They will have to contact the YMCA to set that up. Our district has some 46,500 students and of those we only bus around 10,000 daily. Most of our campuses are “walking” campuses. This includes students from PK to 12th grade.

What should I do when it rains or gets cold?
Again, parents are responsible for transportation or the student can walk but we cannot make exceptions.

Why is the driver asking my child for their name and address?
The driver may ask for personal information like address and phone number. They are required to complete a seating chart by the end of the 1st 3 weeks. We also like our drivers to make contact with the parents to introduce themselves. Checking this information helps the driver make sure they have the proper students. If there is an issue on the bus, we encourage the drivers to talk to the parents and give them the opportunity to work with the child before sending them to the office.

What if my student is a new pre-K or special needs student?
These students will need to contact their home campuses to enroll and have transportation approved. If they are calling right before school, they can expect to transport their children the first week of school. Our normal set up time is three business days but with the added chaos of the school startup, we may not be able to get the add-ons done the first week. Routers will be working on students on a first come, first served basis. (You can leave a message in the phone bank making sure to include the child address and phone number and campus they are attending. We will get back to them as soon as possible.) PK students may or may not be provided transportation both to and from school. This is based on their home school areas. See the listing to determine the busing eligibility. If a student doesn’t ride for three days, the bus will drop the stop until parents contact the transportation base. Special Needs student will have to contact the ARD facilitator at their home campus to see if the student is eligible for transportation. The facilitator will complete the eSPED form and the information will be sent to the special needs routers. There is a 3-5 day set up time for new students. This could be a little longer during the first week or two. The school should contact the parent after the bus is set up. Parents need to know that their daycares have to be in the proper attendance area and registered in order for us to deliver there. Special needs students that do not ride for three days will be removed until the parent contacts transportation to start the bus route again. The three day rule applies to RROC students and Success students as well. These are area stops and students may have to walk a further distance because of the distance the buses have to cover in the short amount of time. These students need to contact their campuses as well to be enrolled on the bus.

Can I get my child’s driver’s name and phone number?
Parents can get the name but we do not give personal information. You can leave your name and number and we can have them call you.

Lost and found items – where do they go?
When a driver finds something left on a bus, they hold the item up in the front of the bus. If it is an electronic device, it is brought into the dispatch office to be locked away for the night. If it is a cell phone, we will look, if possible, for a home number to let the person know we have found the device. Smaller items left (books, clothing, shoes) will be kept at the front and the student should ask the driver. If the driver knows what campus the item came from, they should return the items to the office. It is advisable for parents to mark clothing, backpacks, and lunch boxes with the student’s name so we can make contact to return the items.

Why are there no seat belts on the bus?
School buses are built in a manner that is referred to as compartmentalization. The seat is designed so that if there is an accident, the student would impact the padded back of the seat in front of them. If a seat belt is worn across the waist, only the top part of the body hits the back of the seat possibly causing neck damage. In addition, if the driver is rendered unable to assist the students, some of the smaller ones might not be able to get out of the seat belt. Another hazard would be unruly students using the end of the belt as a weapon. School buses are the safest manner of transportation. If you would like to see how a school bus is made, you can google “how a school bus is made” and look for the IC bus on How It Is Made – part I & II.

Is there a monitor on the bus? Can I volunteer to ride and help?
There are only monitors on the special needs buses. Extra persons on the buses are not in the budget as a norm. We will have extra people from time to time that we will send to assist a driver. People that are not staff of RRISD are not allowed to step onto the bus unless they are on an extracurricular activity. Even if the parent has a student on the bus, they should not attempt to board the bus. To delay transportation is a misdemeanor and a person can be issued a ticket for doing this.