Supporting Services / Transportation / Transportation Frequently Asked Questions
  • Transportation Frequently Asked Questions

    Transportation Frequently Asked Questions

    Prince George’s County Public Schools Transportation Services receives over 1000 calls daily.  In the August and September calls are increased due to student registrations prior to starting school.  The list below details our most frequently asked questions. Many of the responses are from our Administrative Policy 3541.   If your questions are not answered, please feel free to contact us at 301-952-6570, Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.  For problems after regular office hours, call School Security at 301-499-7000.  


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    QUESTION

    ANSWER

    Who is eligible for bus transportation?

    PGCPS provides safe transportation to and from school for enrolled students living beyond one and one-half (1½ ) for elementary students and two (2) miles or more for middle and high school students from their assigned schools.  Reference AP 3541 for more details.

    How will I know if my child has been assigned for transportation?  

    Parents of students registered at schools by August 21st will receive a bus assignment for the first day of school.

    Please click here to access the Transportation Service Request system for your concerns.

    NOTE:  Parents may want to check by contacting their school of enrollment to verify registration is complete prior to this date.  If registration is not complete, Transportation cannot guarantee an assigned bus before the first day of school.

    How does the system assign bus stops?

    The locations of bus stops have been optimized by a routing program taking into account the traffic safety issues and student addresses.  In most cases, bus stops are at the safest corners.  Reference AP 3541 for more details.

    What if I don't find my stop?

    All of the bus stops are based on student addresses provided by each school. If you do not find a stop we may not have the right address.  Contact your school to be sure they have the correct pick-up/drop-off address on file, including any daycare addresses. The Transportation Office does not input address changes. Your child’s school must input the information into the Transportation Module of SchoolMax.   Please click here to access the Transportation Service Request

    How do I request a bus stop change?

    For immediate response Please click here to access the Transportation Service Request

    My child goes to a childcare or babysitter in an area with bus service. May my child ride the bus?

    Students staying with a babysitter or at a childcare center must meet the criteria of all other eligible riders. If the address of a babysitter or childcare center is not within the student’s residence attendance area, the student must then meet transfer policy requirements. Approved, commercial childcare centers will only be assigned for curb-to-curb stops, when possible. Students at private babysitters will be assigned to the closest neighborhood stop on the route.  Reference AP 3541 for more details.

    Can my Preschool students or Kindergarten students get off the bus without someone to receive them?

    No.  If there is not a parent/guardian at the stop to receive a preschool or kindergarten student, the bus driver must return the student back to the school.  Reference AP 3541.1 for more information.  Click here if you wish to report a concern.

    Who should I contact concerning his/her transportation?

    Any concerns should start at the school level and then the transportation office.    Click here if you wish to report a concern.  

    My child receives services under a 504 plan or an IEP.  Who should I contact concerning his/her transportation?

    All concerns and requests for special education transportation should begin at the school level. Please contact the school-based transportation coordinator for your child's school and they will direct your concern to the appropriate supervisor.  Click here if you wish to report a concern.  

    We live within the non transportation zone, but very close to a bus stop for my child’s school. Could my child ride the bus from this stop?

    We do not permit a child to ride a school bus if you are within the non transportation zone area.  If there are concerns, please click here to if you wish to report a concern.  

    My child was approved for a transfer request, how do I request a bus assignment?

    Bus transportation is not provided for transfer students.  Please see https://www.pgcps.org/student-transfers/ for more information.

    How can I arrange to have my child ride a different bus home from school for one day?

    The child’s parent or guardian must send a written request at least one day (24hrs) prior to the requested day to the school principal. If approved, the principal will provide authorization to the driver or the bus lot. The bus stop must be an existing designated stop. If your request is sent over the weekend, please be sure to follow-up with the school on the requested day via phone. 

    How much time should I have my child at the bus stop before the scheduled pickup time?

    It is recommended that students be at the stop 10 minutes before time and at least 10 minutes after the time.  



    Why is my child’s bus ride so long?

    All PGCPS buses operate on a comprehensive schedule, completing two to four routes in the morning and again in the afternoon. This helps to ensure that the system operates safely and efficiently while working to deliver students to school safely and on time. Because of the number of students needing transportation, and to ensure effective scheduling, the overall bus schedules cannot be adjusted to accommodate an individual request. If your child is attending a school outside of their attendance zone, please be aware that travel times will be longer. 

    How do l get notified if the bus is late?

    What should I do if the bus is over 15 minutes late?

    Here Comes the Bus App allows you to get notifications if the bus is running late or if a substitute bus is assigned.  Register for the app at Here Comes The Bus .



    My child missed the bus. Can the bus come back to the bus stop? 

    A bus cannot return for students who missed the bus. Please be sure your child arrives at the designated bus stop at least 10 minutes ahead of schedule.  more reason. due to tier system, the bus must continue to be on time

    The bus drives right past my house. Why can't it stop at my house? 

    Bus stops are placed to allow the buses easy access and egress through neighborhoods while keeping safety a priority. In addition, adding bus stops causes further delays on our bus routes and extends the students' ride time. In the end, this means that bus routes would have to start earlier in the morning to arrive at school on time. Similarly, adding stops in the afternoon would cause students to arrive home later.

    Can students bring musical instruments or large objects with them on the bus? 

    Musical Instruments and large objects are permitted on the school bus as long as the student can carry an instrument or object on and off of the bus by him/herself. They must be placed in the student's lap. Instruments or large objects cannot block the aisle. Large instruments such as drum kits, cellos, and basses are too large to be transported safely on school buses. In an accident, these items can easily become a projectile and can injure a student. If you are unsure, please check with your child's school before bringing a large musical instrument or object to the bus stop.

    My child’s bus is overcrowded. Can some children be placed on another bus?

    Contact the Supervisor to investigate. If the bus has three elementary students or two middle or high school students in each seat, it will seem crowded. However, it will not be over capacity. Our goal is to fully utilize all the space on all the buses in our fleet. 

    I witnessed a problem with a bus driver's driving. How do I report this incident to PGCPS? 

    Please make a note of the location and time of the incident and, most important, the bus number, posted on the side, front and rear of the vehicle. Please call 301-817-0535 and ask for the Supervisor.

    How do I locate a lost item on a school bus? 

    If a driver finds an item on the bus, he/she will turn the item into the school upon completion of the route. If you contact the Transportation Office 301-952-6570 regarding a lost item, please provide us with a full description of the object. Often, drivers are not able to inspect buses while they are on the road and will check for lost items at their next assignment. We recommend that personal items be stored in the child's backpack. Because electronic devices such as cell phones, tablets, iPods and games are very popular, the recovery rate is very low. We recommend that students store these items in secure places, such as their backpacks, while traveling to and from school.

    The bus driver disciplined my child on the bus today. Does the driver have the right to do this? 

    The school bus driver (or attendant) is responsible for the safe operation of the bus. He/she should receive the same level of respect afforded to a classroom teacher, assistant or other school employees. When necessary, drivers or attendants may correct a student. In most cases, that resolves the problem. If the misconduct continues, the driver may complete a "bus conduct referral " to notify the school of the event for further review and, if appropriate, disciplinary action.

    Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook (Section 9: Transportation and Bus Behavior)

    Another child is harassing or bullying my child on the bus. What should I do? 

    PGCPS has a policy that specifically prohibits "bullying" at school, during school events and field trips and on a school bus. The bus driver's main focus must be on operating the school bus safely. As a result, the majority of the driver's attention is focused on the road and traffic conditions, so he/she may not see or hear inappropriate behavior among the students on the bus when it occurs. Students who engage in bullying or harassing behaviors are subject to disciplinary action. Please report any problems to your child's school so that appropriate steps may be taken.  

    Click here if you wish to report a concern. https://www.pgcps.org/antibullying/

    How do I become a Bus Driver or  Bus Attendant?

    Please apply at PGCPS.ORG. For more information, please contact Human Resources at 301.780.2191. https://www.pgcps.org/transportation/cards/Become-a-Bus-Driver/

    How do I submit a change/concern online?

    Please visit the transportation link at www.pgcps.org to click on the link to complete the form. list phone number to trans