Information Overview for Parents
According to NJ state law, the Ramsey Board of Education provides free transportation to students in grades K thru 8 who live more than 2 miles from their school of attendance and to students in grades 9 thru 12 who live more than 2.5 miles from the Ramsey High School. By state law, a student can walk up to, and including, 2 miles (elementary/middle) and 2.5 miles (high school) to get to their bus stop. Eligibility by Street Chart.
The district also provides Subscription (fee-based) transportation to certain areas of Ramsey. Subscription busing is considered on a year-to-year basis and is based on existing routes created for state mandated students. The Ramsey Board of Education does not provide courtesy busing. Subscription (Fee-based) Busing information.
BUS STOPS & CHANGES
Bus stops are determined by need and location of eligible students, as well as safety. Students must use the stop assigned. Bus drivers are not required to stop if there are no students waiting, so it is important for students to be at their bus stop at least 5 minutes before stop time.
Students must be picked up and dropped off at their assigned bus stop. They may not get on or off the bus at an earlier or later bus stop. Students are not allowed to transfer their bus stop to another location. Bus drivers may not accept requests from parents or students to pick up or drop off students at another location. Exceptions are made for emergency situations only. In an emergency, a parent must give written permission to the school and transportation coordinator if a student is allowed to temporarily get on/off the bus at a different bus stop location on the same route. Bus stop changes are considered on an as-requested basis.
Requests should be made to the Transportation Coordinator at email@example.com. No changes are made between early August and mid-September. After that time, IF a request is accepted, there is a 10-school-day turnaround time, and the student must use the original stop until notified otherwise.
Joint custody students who are eligible for busing are entitled to one bus and one bus stop only. This bus and bus stop will be at the student’s legal primary residence only. Legal Proof of which parent is the parent of the primary residence for school purposes is required.
If a student is in the Wrap-Around Program, the parents are responsible for transportation when program times do not coincide with regular Grades 1 - 3 scheduled busing. There is no busing for transitional kindergarten students.
KINDERGARTEN THRU GRADE 3
Kindergarten thru Grade 3 students should have a responsible adult accompany them to their pickup stop in the morning and must have a responsible adult meet them at the drop off stop at the end of the school day. If the driver does not see a responsible adult for a child, the driver will do the following:
- Keep the student on the bus
- Contact dispatch at the bus company to inform them the student was “undeliverable”
- Complete the route and then return back to the student's bus stop
- If no responsible adult is present, driver will return the student to the school
- The school will attempt to reach the parent to tell them the student needs to be picked up at the school
- If the school cannot reach the parent, the school will contact the police department
- If no employees are at the school to receive the student, the student will be brought to the police department
PICKUP AND DROPOFF TIMES
All students must be outside and ready at their assigned bus stop at least 5 minutes before their scheduled pickup time. Bus Drivers are not required to stop if no students are waiting. Please note: The times listed on your child’s bus schedule are APPROXIMATE times. Due to various circumstances each day, the bus driver may be a few minutes earlier or a few minutes later. We ask for your patience and understanding, especially at the beginning of the school year when everyone (drivers, students & parents) is adjusting to the new routine. Once everyone falls into a routine, the times will become more consistent.
On days when a delayed opening has been instituted, students will be picked up two hours later than the time scheduled on the bus schedule. On delayed opening days, morning sessions of the kindergarten classes will be cancelled. The Preschool classes will use a two-hour delay. All school schedules (regular, early dismissal, minimum day, inclement weather early dismissal) can be found on the school website. School Schedules Link.
Buses are sometimes delayed for various reasons. Buses rarely do not come at all. If a bus is late arriving in the morning, students should wait at least 15 minutes after the assigned pickup time before returning home or calling the school. If after 15 minutes the bus still has not come, please call the appropriate school. Arrangements will be made to get all children to school. No student will be marked tardy as a result of a late bus.
MISSED AFTERNOON DROPOFF PROCEDURE
Should a student miss their afternoon bus stop, the following procedure will be followed:
- Bus driver contacts dispatch at the bus company
- Bus company calls the school
- School calls the parent
- Bus driver will drive the student back to their missed bus stop at the end of the bus route. The driver will drop the student off at their regular bus stop only. Driver must drop off on the residence side of any major road
The safety of all students, as well as bus drivers, is our top priority. If a bus is in an emergency situation (weather, accident):
- Driver contacts dispatch at bus company (or transportation coordinator at BOE office if it’s a Ramsey owned bus)
- Bus company contacts BOE office
- BOE office contacts school (and Ramsey Police if appropriate)
- BOE office and school work together to get an automated message out to all parents/guardians
- BOE office assures police are involved to assure the safety of all students
- All drivers of contracted routes are provided with phone numbers of parents as well as contact numbers for school principals, transportation coordinator and board administrator.
PLEASE NOTE: Each situation varies and will need to be assessed and handled as appropriate. It may take some time to gather information and develop a plan before information can be provided. Every effort will be made to communicate as quickly and efficiently as possible.
STUDENTS ENROLLED IN NONPUBLIC SCHOOLS
The same mileage requirements apply for students to qualify for busing to a nonpublic school. The nonpublic school will supply student/parent with a B6T form (Request for Nonpublic School Transportation) to complete. The school will send the form to the Ramsey Board of Ed, Parents will be notified as to eligibility. All eligible students are either placed on a route or provided Aide In Lieu (AIL) of Transportation if a route is not available to that nonpublic school. AIL is sent to parents in 2 installments (usually January and June). AIL amount for 2018-2019 is $1,000.
BERGEN ACADEMIES STUDENTS
The parent should mention busing upon enrollment at Bergen Academies. The Academies will contact Ramsey’s Transportation Coordinator and busing will be arranged. The student/parent will be contacted with details.