July 24th, 2020
We hope everyone is safe and well during these times. We know many families may have concerns regarding what school and transportation will look like this September. Please be assured that the Toronto Student Transportation Group is actively planning transportation for September, and is working closely with the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) and the Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB) as they develop plans for the safe return to school.
Parents/guardians will receive a pre-registration survey from the TDSB/TCDSB in the coming week asking about your intentions for school and student transportation in September. This survey is only for those children in your family that qualify for transportation and does not include siblings that do not qualify. Please ensure you complete the survey, as this information will help us effectively plan student transportation for the new school year.
As TDSB/TCDSB has not yet received final direction on the model for returning to school from the Ministry of Education, we expect some additional challenges for our launch of transportation in the fall. For instance, under a full return to school and full capacity in busses, students are expected to receive transportation with safety considerations and enhanced cleaning measures in place. However, if we are not authorized for a full return to school without restrictions or a limited bus capacity, we may require a phased approach to transportation, where some students may not receive transportation in September or October, and may be phased in as soon as there is available capacity throughout the school year. Additionally, in this scenario, priority transportation service would be provided to families whose children have special education needs.
Please also note that under either option, full services may still not be possible given the potential for bus driver shortages in September, due to the pandemic. We encourage parents to make alternate arrangements in the event there are challenges, including Active and Safe Travel (AST). For more information on AST, please visit our website at www.torontoschoolbus.org/activetransport
Once TDSB/TCDSB finalizes their return to school plans and they are approved by the Ministry of Education, we will be able to finalize our plans for student transportation. As soon as this information is confirmed, we will communicate directly with parents/guardians about any possible impacts to student transportation services. We hope to provide you with another update in early August.
As always, if you have any questions, please contact our transportation office at 416-394-4BUS (416-394-4287) (starting July 27th please use our temporary start-up number at 647-790-3829) or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Toronto Student Transportation Group