- Doesn't the school district already provide busing?
- Will TRAFFIX also serve special needs students?
- When will service start?
- How were the schools chosen for bus service?
- With a District this large, why are only nine schools getting service?
- Is the school district operating the buses?
- How safe are the buses?
- How safe are the drivers?
- How much does it cost?
- Why do we even have to pay?
- How does the price of a TRAFFIX pass compare to other school bus programs?
- Are there one-way passes available or discounts for multi-child families?
- What if my growing neighborhood begins to contribute to traffic congestion, will my student be eligible for service?
- How do I stop receiving text messages from TRAFFIX?
- How do I buy a pass?
- When will I receive the pass?
- Can my child begin riding right away?
- Do kids need to show a pass to board the bus?
- What if my child loses the bus pass?
- Do you pro-rate the price of the pass during the year?
- Do you sell single use or weekly passes?
- Can I get a refund?
- When does the bus arrive at school?
- When does the bus leave school?
- What about Wacky Wednesdays and Conference Days?
- Where does the bus stop in my neighborhood?
- Why do you want children at the stop 5 minutes early?
- What if my child misses the bus?
- What if the bus is late?
- Who do I call if there is a problem?
- Can my child be assigned to more than one route?
- Can my child get off at a different stop?
- Can my child bring a friend home on the bus?
- Do the buses have seatbelts?
- Do all riders have to wear their seatbelts?
- What if my child has to cross the street?
- Can riders open the windows?
- Can riders stick anything out the windows?
- Do cars have to stop when a bus stops?
- What happens if a child doesn't follow the rules?
- Who files the Incident Report Forms?
- Can my bus pass be taken away?
- Are parents financially responsible for vandalism?
- What if my child is being bullied?
- What if my child is accused of bullying?
1. Doesn't the school district already provide busing?
The San Ramon Valley Unified School District (SRVUSD) dropped its school bus program in 2007 due to lack of funding. Only special needs students receive District busing now. With state budget cuts in education, there simply isn't funding available for the high cost of transportation. That money has been diverted to the classroom.
2. Will TRAFFIX also serve special needs students?
No. The SRVUSD will continue to provide transportation for special education students.
3. When will bus service run?
For the School year 2013-14, service will begin on the first day of the school year, August 27th, 2013, and end on the last day of school, June 12th, 2014.
For the School year 2014-15, service will begin on the first day of the school year, August 26th, 2014, and end on the last day of school, June 11th, 2015.
4. How were the schools chosen for bus service?
A traffic engineering firm conducted a comprehensive study of major intersections throughout the San Ramon Valley. The intersections were ranked by their congestion during peak morning and afternoon traffic periods related to nearby schools. Parents at all SRVUSD schools were then surveyed to measure their willingness to participate in a busing program. The schools were then ranked by how much traffic congestion they caused and how likely their parents were to buy a pass and have their kids ride.
Based on these factors, TRAFFIX selected seven schools for service in the 2009-2010 school year that showed the greatest chance to reduce traffic congestion: Los Cerros and Pine Valley middle schools; Country Club, Green Valley,Walt Disney, Neil Armstrong and Vista Grande elementary schools. In subsequent studies, California and Monte Vista high schools were selected for service in the 2012-13 school year to reduce traffic congestion.
5. With a District this large, why are only nine schools getting service?
The money available through Measure J is only enough to operate 19 buses. Even with that many buses, it is necessary to serve all the middle schools first, then use the same buses to go out to the elementary schools. This "tiering" of service is necessary to get the most service out of the buses we have.
6. Is the school district operating the buses?
No. SRVUSD does not have the funding or equipment to run the service. TRAFFIX conducted a formal bidding process to hire a private bus operator that would provide the greatest reliability, experience and safety at the most competitive rate. First Student, a nationally-recognized student transportation operator was selected to operate the TRAFFIX service. This made it possible to provide new buses and the most routing and service for the funding we have.
7. How safe are the buses?
New school buses are some of the safest vehicles on the road today. Our buses are fully equipped with lap-shoulder seat belts, steel reinforced frames, GPS and video monitoring to ensure your child's safety.
According to National Safety Council Statistics, School buses are 172 times safer than passenger cars in terms of occupant deaths per 100 million passenger miles traveled. In fact, school buses rank much better than any other form of surface transportation.
8. How safe are the drivers?
Our operator, First Student, is a nationwide leader with an unparalleled safety record. All First Student drivers undergo a rigorous training, certification and supervision process that has kept First Student a national leader in student safety. These drivers are focused professionals - your child's safety is their number one concern.
9. How much does it cost?
The annual pass is $275 but parents who purchase a pass during the promotional period offered each Spring will get the pass at a discounted price of only $200. That equals 55 cents per trip, much cheaper than the cost of driving a car*.
*The IRS currently rates the cost of driving an average priced/sized passenger vehicle at .55 cents per mile.
10. Why do we even have to pay?
Without a contribution from parents, Measure J funding will not cover the full cost of servicing five schools. And without service in these areas, we can't reduce traffic congestion enough to justify taxpayer support of the program.
11. How does the price of a TRAFFIX pass compare to other school bus programs?
At the $200 promotional rate, the TRAFFIX annual pass is less than half the price of the previous program run by SRVUSD, and current programs in comparable communities. The Lamorinda School Bus Service charges $425 a year, Tiburon charges $540 a year, and in Palo Alto parents pay $810 for an annual bus pass.
12. Are there one-way passes available or discounts for multi-child families?
We already discounted our round-trip pass to be less than a one-way pass or multi-child discount in other programs. We need to keep the program simple and streamlined so it can be run with minimal administrative staffing and expense.
13. What if my growing neighborhood begins to contribute to traffic congestion, will my student be eligible for service?
The service and specific routes will be re-evaluated each school year.
14. How do I stop receiving text messages from TRAFFIX?
To stop receiving test messages from TRAFFIX, simply go to your My Account page, click "Edit" and remove the phone number from the text message field, then save your changes.
16. How do I buy a pass?
If you are new to the TRAFFIX site, go to the Buy A Pass page and fill out the registration form. Then use a Visa, Master Card, American Express or Discover Card to buy the pass.
If you have already purchased a bus pass from TRAFFIX in the past, LOGIN and either click the “Buy 20XX-XX Pass” from your Account page or go to the Buy A Pass page.
17. When will I receive the pass?
If you are purchasing before the school year, your pass will be mailed about one week before the start of school. If buying during the school year, you'll receive your pass by mail within about three business days.
18. Can my child begin riding right away?
Yes. As soon as your online transaction is complete you'll get an email receipt. Print it and have your child show it to the driver until your pass arrives.
19. Do kids need to show a pass to board the bus?
Yes. All riders need to have their TRAFFIX pass with them whenever they ride the bus, even if the driver already knows them.
20. What if my child loses the bus pass?
You need to buy a replacement pass on the website for $10. Your email receipt will allow your child to continue riding until the replacement arrives. Print a copy for your child to show the driver.
21. Do you pro-rate the price of the pass during the year?
Yes. If you move to the area mid-year or you just decide to try the bus after the school year starts, you'll only pay for the time left in the school year.
22. Do you sell single use or weekly passes?
No. TRAFFIX is a traffic congestion relief program and to maintain our funding we have to get cars off the road. Occasional riders do not help us relieve traffic in any significant way. We also can't afford to spend money staffing an office to sell day passes, and risk overloading buses for our regular riders. We want to put as much money into service as we can, and as little as necessary into overhead.
23. Can I get a refund?
If you move or if your child is transferred to a different school, we will refund the unused portion of your pass. But please note these are the only circumstances under which we can offer a refund.
24. When does the bus arrive at school?
All routes are timed to arrive at school 5-10 minutes before the morning bell.
25. When does the bus leave school?
All buses are scheduled to depart school 7 minutes after the afternoon bell.
26. What about Wednesdays and Conference Days?
There are separate schedules for Regular Days, Wednesdays, and Minimum Days for all routes posted
on our website. Go to the page for your route to see the exact times.
27. Where does the bus stop in my neighborhood?
On your route page you'll see a Google map showing the route of the bus and the exact location of every stop. Click on the map to zoom in or switch to Satellite view to see an actual photographic map of your street and the closest stop.
28. Why do you want children at the stop 5 minutes early?
State law requires drivers to stop traffic and escort children to the bus if they are not already standing at the stop. This throws off our schedules and annoys the neighbors. We also don't want your kids to miss the bus by cutting it too close in the morning. Our drivers try hard to stick to the published schedule, but sometimes things happen and they just can't be that precise.
29. What if my child misses the bus?
That does sometimes happen to some kids so please be prepared. Every family should have a backup plan where kids have a way to contact a parent or neighbor that can get them to school, or that they can notify if they plan to walk.
30. What if the bus is late?
This sometimes happens too due to traffic or mechanical problems. Our bus operator would have a replacement bus on the way in case of a problem. To check on a late bus call the First Student Dispatch Office at (925) 926-0375 between 5:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.
31. Who do I call if there is a problem?
If it involves Lost & Found or any issue relating directly to a bus or driver, call the First Student dispatch office at (925) 926-0375 between 5:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on school days.
For everything else, call TRAFFIX Program Manager Elaine Schroth on school days from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at (925) 866-TRFX (8739).
32. Can my child be assigned to more than one route?
All students are assigned one route and one stop. But if circumstances require your child to be at different homes or after school care locations, contact the Program Manager and he will try to accommodate you.
33. Can my child get off at a different stop?
Students may only travel to their assigned stop, unless prior arrangements have been made with the Program Manager. If it is for a one-time occurrence like a play date, please see the Play Date Policy on the Customer Service page.
34. Can my child bring a friend home on the bus?
Yes, if that friend is a registered TRAFFIX rider and you make the request in writing two school days in advance. (Please see the Play Date Policy on the Customer Service page). But under no circumstance can we transport a child who is not a registered TRAFFIX rider.
35. Do the buses have seatbelts?
Yes. All our buses are equipped with lap and shoulder seatbelts.
36. Do all riders have to wear their seatbelts?
Yes. All riders must wear a seatbelt at all times without exception.
37. What if my child has to cross the street?
When getting off the bus, drivers will escort any children having to cross the street.
38. Can riders open the windows?
Yes, kids are allowed to open the windows, except when common sense or the bus driver dictates otherwise.
39. Can riders stick anything out the windows?
No. No part of a child's body should ever extend through a window, and no item of any kind may thrown out a window.
40. Do cars have to stop when a bus stops?
Yes! When a bus stops and its red lights and stop arm are activated, cars in both directions must stop. Where there is a divided roadway with a median, only cars in moving the same direction as the bus must stop. There are significant fines for drivers who fail to yield to a School bus.
41. What happens if a child doesn't follow the rules?
A verbal warning will be issued to the student... If the student continues to violate student behavior guidelines, then an Incident Report Form will be filed. A copy of the report will be sent to the school and parents. The school may take appropriate disciplinary action and the TRAFFIX Program Manager can suspend or revoke transportation privileges.
42. Who files the Incident Report Forms?
Parents, other students, teachers, members of the public, school site administrators or the bus driver may report student behavior violations.
43. Can my bus pass be taken away?
Yes. If your child does not respond to the progressive discipline assigned, your pass may be suspended or revoked without refund.
44. Are parents financially responsible for vandalism?
Yes, parents/guardians are financially responsible for vandalism caused by their child.
45. What if my child is being bullied?
Contact your school principal or the Program Manager immediately.
46. What if my child is accused of bullying?
Your child may be entered into a progressive discipline process. If bullying is happening and does not cease, your child may be temporarily suspended from the bus, and/or may have the annual pass revoked without refund.