Department of Transportation
Frequently Asked Questions
MY CHILD ATTENDS A CMSD SCHOOL. WILL THEY RECEIVE TRANSPORTATION?
Transportation eligibility is based on distance from the home residence to the school.
Students in grades K-6 must live 1.00 mile or more from their home school to receive some form of transportation service.
Students in grades 7-12 must live 1.00 mile or more from their home school to receive RTA transportation. (Identification swipe cards are provided for this group.)
State minimum requires transportation for only those students in grades K-8 who reside more than 2.0 miles from school. The state does not require us to transport grades 9-12.
MY CHILD WAS GRANTED A SPECIAL TRANSFER (VOLUNTARY ASSIGNMENT). WHAT ARE THE TRANSPORTATION ARRANGEMENTS?
Transportation is not provided for students on Special Transfers or on Voluntary Assignments. Parents waive transportation when enrolling their student in a non-neighborhood school. If transportation is an issue getting a student to school, please contact Student Assignments to see if a closer school is available.
WHO DO I CONTACT TO CHANGE MY ADDRESS?
Parents can go to any neighborhood school or to the Student Assignment’s Office located at 1111 Superior Ave. Verification may include a utility bill, pay stub, driver’s license, etc. (This information is not immediately available to the Transportation Office. Please give our computers 24 to 48 hours to receive the updated information before we can check on the student’s eligibility to receive transportation.)
HOW WILL PARENTS BE NOTIFIED OF AN ELIGIBLE STUDENT’S BUS ASSIGNMENT?
If your student is already registered and has received a school assignment, the eligible student will receive his/her bus assignment in the transportation mailer. If the student was registered late, parents should call the Transportation Office at 216.838.4BUS (4287) to receive the eligible student’s bus assignment.
IF A STUDENT IS ELIGIBLE FOR RTA BUS TICKETS, HOW WILL THEY GET THEIR TICKETS?
Students eligible for RTA identification swipe cards or bus tickets will receive their card/tickets on the first day of school in the school office, or at an area designated by the school. RTA transportation is free for the students first scheduled school day. Students will be eligible for RTA on the first day of school.
MY CHILD DOES NOT QUALIFY FOR FREE RTA STUDENT TICKETS. WHAT CAN I DO?
Student RTA bus tickets
The Transportation Office at 3832 Ridge Road will sell Student RTA bus tickets. Tickets are sold on Mondays and Fridays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. One ride tickets are $1.65 and two ride tickets are $3.30. (Money order made out to CMSD Transportation Department is the only accepted form of payment.)
MY CHILD HAS AN IEP (Individual Education Programs). CAN MY STUDENT RECEIVE TRANSPORTATION?
Transportation eligibility is addressed in the student’s IEP, which is completed in Special Education Dept. The Special Education Specialist will indicate on the IEP whether transportation will be required.
If you have any further questions, please contact the Special Education Dept. concerning your child’s IEP.
CAN MY CHILD RECEIVE TRANSPORTATION TO A DAYCARE FACILITY?
Transportation to a daycare facility is provided only to approved Special Education students who receive curb to curb services. This information must be resubmitted each year. Click here for Childcare Transportation Modification Form
MY CHILD HAS A MEDICAL CONDITION AND NEEDS TRANSPORTATION, WOULD HE/ SHE BE ELIGIBLE?
Medical transportation request form should be filled out by your doctor and returned to the Health Services office or the school nurse for approval. They will send the approved information to Transportation for assignment. Students will be assigned to the closest existing stop. This information must be submitted at the beginning of each year or as needed. Click here for the Transportation Letter to Doctors
MY SPECIAL EDUCATION CHILD IS PICKED UP AT THE HOUSE AND DROPPED OFF AT THE HOUSE. CAN THE STUDENT’S SIBLING(S) RIDE ALONG ALSO?
A sibling can ride along only if the sibling(s) is eligible for transportation due to mileage guidelines. (Students in grade K-6 must live 1.00 miles or more from their assigned school). Also, siblings can ride along only if the bus has room to accommodate them.
THE CLUSTER STOP TO WHICH MY CHILD IS ASSIGNED IS TOO FAR. CAN I CHANGE THIS STOP?
In an effort to accommodate the severe cuts in transportation costs, bus routes had to be shortened so that more students could be picked up with each bus. This meant limiting the number of bus stops to one per area and assigning all the students to that area’s cluster stop. Cluster stops are used for all schools, both public and non-public. State guideline: Pupils in grade kindergarten through six may be required to walk up to one-half mile to a designated bus stop (3301-83-13b1). Stops for CMSD students are up to ¼ mile.
THE BUS PASSES BY MY HOUSE ON THE WAY TO A STOP UP THE STREET. WHY CAN’T IT JUST STOP AND PICK UP MY CHILD?
Please remember that we transport more than 40,000 students every day, so it is impossible to provide door-to-door service to everyone and do it in a timely manner. In most neighborhoods, it is more efficient to pick up several students in one stop, usually at a corner or other mid-way point for the students.
MY CHILD ATTENDS A CHARTER, COMMUNITY OR NON PUBLIC SCHOOL. CAN TRANSPORTATION BE PROVIDED?
Students in grades K-6:
These students must live 1.00 mile or more from the school. If there is no transportation based on the Guidelines stated below, the student if eligible will receive parental reimbursement. Please note, if the travel time to the school is more than 30-minutes, the student will not qualify for transportation. (RC 3327.01)
These students must live 1.00 mile or more from the school. Students will receive a RTA bus pass.
Students in grades 9-12:
These students must live 1 mile or more from the school. Students will receive a RTA bus pass.
MY CHILD’S BUS DID NOT COME THIS MORNING. WHAT DO I DO?
Remember, the student should be at the bus stop at least 10 minutes ahead of time. Contact the Depot to find information on your student’s bus: 216.838.4BUS (4287)
MY CHILD’S BUS IS LATE DROPPING OFF MY CHILD AFTER SCHOOL. WHAT DO I DO?
Remember to allow time for unexpected traffic issues. You should contact your child’s school immediately to make sure he or she got on the bus after school.
If your child did get on the bus as usual, call 216.838.4BUS (4287) - our dispatchers will check with the bus driver to see if the bus was delayed, your child missed his or her stop, or got off at a different stop. Please explain to your child that he or she is to get on and off the bus ONLY at the assigned stop.
A PARENT OR AN ADULT IS REQUIRED AT MY CHILD’S STOP. I WAS NOT HOME WHEN MY CHILD’S BUS ARRIVED. WHERE IS THE STUDENT? WHAT DO I DO?
Kindergarteners and curb to curb students must be met at the stop by a parent or a responsible adult (18 or over) authorized by the parent in advance - ID may be required. It is the Cleveland Metropolitan School District policy not to release your child to an unknown adult or empty house. Please be advised that if no one is home to receive your child, the bus drivers are instructed to take your student to the designated school (New Max Hayes- 2211 West 65th Street). If this has occurred, call 216.838.4BUS (4287).
Please note: Corner stop students - 1st graders and over can be released at the stop on their own without an adult present. Drivers are not allowed to blow the bus horn during pick-ups or drop-offs.
Kindergarten Walking waiver
Kindergarten Walking waiver (Español)
Special Ed drop Procedure Concerning Busing