Routing of buses shall be done by the Office of Pupil Transportation. Contractors are responsible to cooperate in all respects, including providing relevant information to OPT, in connection with routing.
- A pupil or stop is routed and assigned to the borough in which the pupil’s school is located.
- Except at the beginning of the School Year when new runs are assigned to all vehicles, contractors are informed that a pupil is added to or deleted from a run. The Contractor will receive the pupil’s address, school, date on which service is to begin, disability and ambulatory status, if applicable (i.e., whether the pupil is in a wheelchair, needs a hydraulic lift or can use the steps of the vehicle).
- Parents are informed by letter of the Contractor’s name and telephone number, run number, type of vehicle and first day of service. This information is provided when a pupil is newly routed or when there is a change in the pupil’s run.
- If a run or groups of runs are completely revised, the company will be provided with new listings.
- The Contractor may print revised run listings at any time.
- OPT Borough Directors or their designees may request by telephone that a pupil be added to a run. A written confirmation of the assignment of the pupil to that run will follow. To ensure payment, the Contractor is responsible to ensure that it receives written notification prior to commencement of service.
- Because letters informing parents of the transportation arranged for their children go astray from time to time, in order to confirm transportation arrangements, the Contractor shall call the parent and the school before picking up the pupil for the first time.
- If a newly added pupil is not ready at the address provided on the first day on which transportation is scheduled, the Contractor shall confirm the address and pickup time with the school. If the Pupil cannot be found by the third day of service, the Contractor must call the appropriate Office of Pupil Transportation Borough Director or his or her designee.
- Adjustments to routes can be initiated by the Contractor for stop–to-school routing with prior approval from OPT.
- If there are problems with a run such as overcrowding or inadequate time between schools, the
- Contractor must report the problems to OPT immediately. The Contractor should feel free to recommend changes that will improve the runs and make such adjustments for stop to school routing in OPT’s Vendor Edulog System. All changes must be approved in advance by OPT.
- The driver or other bus company representative may not unilaterally refuse to serve a child because of a routing problem. All pupils assigned to a contractor must be taken to and from school. OPT will attempt to resolve all problems as quickly as possible.
Schools may wish to make adjustment in their schedules of arrivals and dismissals from time to time. The school must make such changes through OPT. The Contractor shall make no changes in arrival or dismissal schedules without specific instructions from OPT.
Pupil’s Change of Address
The Contractor is not authorized to make any change in the address at which a pupil is to be picked up or dropped off. Parents who plan to move must inform the school, and the school must send a change-of address notice to OPT. OPT will arrange to pick up the pupil from his new home.
Guidelines and Procedures
Routing of buses is the joint responsibility of the Office of Pupil Transportation and the Contractor.
The Office of Pupil Transportation establishes routes. Each route is a series of stops at which pupils attending a particular school are to be picked up and dropped off. The Contractor shall make pickups and drop-offs only at authorized bus stops in accordance with the following stipulations:
- The Contractor shall maintain stop-to-school routes by making adjustments to routes when needed. For example: add or remove stops if service is required or remove stops if not in use after three straight days. If adjustments are made to the route, the Contractor must update each stop’s pickup and drop-off times on the adjusted route.
- No stops are to be added or changed without authorization from the Office of Pupil Transportation.
- (Note: Schools must request all changes from the Office of Pupil Transportation and NOT from the Contractor.) With approval from OPT, existing stops can be added by the contractor, if the school requests service to be restored.
Route listings are provided by the Office of Pupil Transportation to the Contractor. These route listings give the address, grades, and session times for each school, the locations of the stops and the number of pupils to be picked up at each stop.
Route listings also show (under the heading “Vendor Route Numbers”) the OPT-assigned run number for the bus serving the school each time the stop is served.
The Contractor need not follow the order of stops provided by the Office of Pupil Transportation in setting up the actual bus runs that will pick up the pupils and deliver them to school. The stops may be served in any order that is convenient and efficient. Pupils need not be segregated by school on each bus. The Contractor is required to set up schedules of bus runs that will serve all stops and meet all session times, using as few vehicles as possible. OPT must be notified and a copy of the run adjustment sent to OPT via scanning with pickup times together with the number of students.
The Contractor must identify and report to OPT which buses serve which stops at which times and must inform OPT immediately when any changes are made in which buses serve which stops so OPT files can be updated.
Bus companies are required to provide service for arrivals and dismissals at the times specified by the Office of Pupil Transportation. Any adjustment in schedules must be requested by the school from the Office of Pupil Transportation which then will inform the bus company if the adjustment has been authorized.