To address a continuing bus driver shortage and create a more efficient district transportation program, families whose children are eligible for bus transportation must update their student’s Bus Registration information in Aspen for the new school year.
We are asking all parents whose students are eligible for transportation to verify and update their bus registration in Aspen by 5 p.m. on August 15.
It is important to review your child’s current bus needs and verify or update for next school year. Accurate data for each student is necessary so the district can continue to run its buses without interruption. When families request transportation for their child but don’t use it, this causes undue strain on our system. Please only register your child for transportation if they need it for the start of school. Eligible families always have the option to add transportation service at any time during the school year.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) – Bus Registration
Who is eligible to ride the school bus?
- Elementary – All Students
- Middle School – Students who live more than 1/2 mile from school
- High School – Students who live more than 1 mile from school
Is transportation eligibility changing?
No. Transportation eligibility will be the same in the new school year as in recent years. If the driver shortage continues or worsens, walk zones could be expanded to reduce the demand for bus transportation.
Why is bus registration so important?
The national bus driver shortage has been made more challenging by the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to COVID, the district had 87 bus drivers and routes. There are currently only 58 available bus drivers and routes. The district needs to create more efficient bus routes to maintain bus service for all eligible students. Accurate ridership data is the most important way to mitigate changes to bus service or bus eligibility. We are asking for your help!
What can I do to help?
- If you have been transporting your child to school, please consider continuing that practice, if possible
- Verify and/or update your child’s bus registration information in Aspen. Accurate information is critical to creating efficient bus routing for the new school year.
When will my child’s bus route and stop information be posted for the new school year?
Your child’s bus registration information for the new school year can be found in Aspen starting on August 30.
In 2021, the Bus Registration form was emailed to parents. Will we receive a similar email this year?
No. The district is asking families to verify or correct the information that is already in Aspen for their child(ren).
How do I make a change to my child’s bus transportation information in Aspen?
What if I have an incoming kindergarten student? When will I be able to verify their transportation information?
Bus registration is done at the time of enrolment into the district as a new student. In mid-July, the student enrollment data in Aspen will “roll over” to the new school year. At that time, incoming kindergarten students will be able to be viewed by families in the Aspen portal. Once an Aspen login is generated and provided to the family, families can then view and change their child’s bus registration.
What if I DON’T request transportation for the start of the school year but I find my child needs bus transportation during the year?
Students who do not choose bus transportation for the beginning of the year can always resume transportation with 48 hours’ notice to the Transportation Department.
What if I DO request transportation for the start of the school year but my child doesn’t end up riding the bus?
If a child does not ride the bus for a period of 10 days or more, the Transportation Department will reach out to the family to see if transportation is still needed. The district encourages families not to request transportation in Aspen if it’s not needed. Accuracy is important so the Transportation Department can plan appropriately for the start of the school year. Please remember you can always opt-in at any time during the year if your transportation needs change and your child is eligible for the bus.
What if I have a “once-in-a-while” need for bus transportation for my child?
We would ask that you don’t request transportation on the form but instead contact the Transportation Department to arrange transportation for your child if it is only needed a few times a year. Bus transportation is always available for eligible students.
What about situations at the elementary level when schools will not allow “walkers” in the afternoon due to inclement weather?
In cases such as inclement weather when walking home from school is not allowed and more students need to use the bus, the Transportation Department will work with the school to provide bus transportation to all who need it on those days. Student safety is a priority.
Will my child’s bus stop change in the new school year?
The district evaluates bus routes each summer to create more efficient routing following student walk distances as outlined in Board Policy 8412. As a result, some drop-off and pick-up locations may change for some students, with students being required to walk to their bus stops. Fewer stops mean more efficient ridership and routes.
How far does my child have to walk to a bus stop?
The distance to student bus stops is outlined as part of Board Policy 8412 which states:
- Elementary: Up to 1/10 of a mile from home
- Middle School: Up to 1/2 mile from home
- High School: Up to 1 mile from home
What if I have additional questions?
Please email any questions about the transportation form to firstname.lastname@example.org