Director of Transportation – That is indeed the question that has been asked, again and again in many different ways, of our transportation staff. Why do our children have to SWIPE their bus pass?

It is something else to remember along with lunches, jackets and homework.

After all, my child has been riding for three years; the driver knows him.

My child has lost three bus passes already this year; I really do not want to pay for another one.

My child is in Grade 6 and he knows very well where he needs to go and is entitled to ride any of the buses from his school.

So… why do students have to swipe?

Swiping is necessary because:

  • It is no longer common for bus drivers to drive a bus route for several years and know all their students. Turnover of bus drivers results in some students having as many as three or more different drivers throughout one year. It has become necessary for safety reasons to track students differently.
  • Swiping allows us to see who is riding a bus and where a student gets on and off the bus. In the case of a delay or breakdown, we can produce a list of student riders who have swiped on the bus. Students who do not swipe will not be on that list.
  • Swiping also gives us record of how many students ride a bus daily, so that we can determine if the student load on any bus is appropriate, or if adjustments to bus routes to equalize student loads is necessary.
  • Finally, finding and boarding the correct bus when there are upwards of 20 buses at some schools is not a simple matter for young riders. If a student boards a wrong bus, swiping helps us to find lost students. A student who has swiped onto a wrong bus can be located quickly and the driver contacted.

The answer to the original questions is a resounding YES! Everyone should SWIPE.

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