DC Connect Frequently Asked Questions

Will the shuttles be open to all students?

School administrators will identify students who can participate. The program is currently able to accommodate up to 30 students per participating school.

Can  students eat/drink during the ride?

Students may not eat while riding in DC SchoolConnect vehicles. They may consume water only.

Is there an age limit? Are there booster seats? Students must at least be in kindergarten. This service will be available for kids at least 40 pounds and height of 35 inches. Booster seats will be required for certain younger students and will be provided by the service. At this time, we do not have the car seats needed to transport Pre-K students, but we will work on acquiring them. Furthermore, we need an aid for all trips with Pre-K students and are still in the hiring process. We would like to work with you on the best way to meet this need in the future.

Are siblings able to ride together?

Yes, only if they attend the same school. If not, tight schedules limit the number of stops we can make, and it is difficult to offer to some families and not to others. Some parents are also uncomfortable putting much older kids in the vehicle with younger students. However, we will offer collocated stops moving forward.

What kind of vehicle will my child be riding in?

The drivers will either be in a shuttle bus with a DC SchoolConnect logo on it or in a standard automobile. You will receive a call prior to the start of your child’s schedule with the vehicle and driver information.

How will I be able to identify my child’s driver?

The drivers will have a DC SchoolConnect flag to identify themselves as a driver.

Why can’t we change schedules every day?

We have existing times for families to meet buses, and it’s not feasible to change on the fly given they are shared rides. However, we can offer different AM and PM drop off times every day. Alternatively, we can only provide on days of the week it’s desired.  This can be arranged by providing that information in advance.

 Would there be a way to track my child(ren), while they are on the bus?

Our service provider will provide an app or online portal, which may not be available until a later date.

 Is there a way to track the bus to know when it arrives at each stop?

There will be a way to track bus arrivals. However, this feature may not be ready for all schools until a later date.

 Can I cancel a ride?

Yes. Same-day and future rides can be cancelled by calling our Hotline at 855-453-0613 option 1 for parents, then option 1 again to cancel. Please be sure to cancel the ride the day before or as early as possible on the same day.

 Can the program accommodate after school events?

Yes. Upon enrolling your child, let the registering staff know if aftercare pickup is needed, and we will schedule a late pickup for the days your child attends aftercare. This applies to before care as well.

 How many students per shuttle?

One to six students per vehicle depending on capacity.

 If there are more students than seats, will seats become available on a first come first serve basis?

Every child that is registered will be transported unless the family has canceled the service for that day. In the event there is an overload, an emergency backup will be sent to make sure all students get to school.

When will shuttles arrive for morning pick up and afternoon drop-off?

After registering staff will reach out to families to confirm enrollment and determine which stop and times the student will use.

Can child change pickup / drop-off?

Yes, if you and the school administrator have approved it in advance. Changes to schedule or location must be routine and cannot by changed same day (i.e., every Friday they go to the same location or only transportation will be set up for Tuesday through Thursday, depending on the family’s needs)

Why can’t you take kids to their house?

Every stop adds a few minutes.  By using grouped stops the overall trip time will be lower even if students may have to spend a few minutes traveling to that stop.

Why can’t you pick up outside of ward 7 & 8?
We are only able to serve the current 25 schools with existing resources; however, we do expect to expand.

Will they run on the same timeline every day, or will it be based on school/community demand?

Each school will have a different timeline depending on school requirements such as start time and end time. DC School Connect will follow school calendars regarding starting and ending times and days in school for DCPS and individual public charter schools.

Who will be operating the shuttles? Will each driver have an aide or attendant?

Qualified drivers will be hired to operate each shuttle but our program partners which will be regulated by DFHV. Transportation Assistants will coordinate at schools and in some cases will ride along in vehicles to monitor.

Can parents ride the shuttle?

No. We require parents or previously designated guardian to pick up children in third grade or below at pickup locations. Students who are not met will be returned to their school.

Can I request a specific driver?

No. Drivers are chosen based on availability.

 Will the driver have a list of kids that are supposed to be on shuttle?

Yes. Once students are properly enrolled and the program has confirmed schedules, they will be added to the drivers’ rosters.

Will drivers and attendants have to go through a background clearance check.

Yes. Drivers are required to have an additional for hire license that requires a FBI background check that includes fingerprinting, driving history report, special inspections, and registration of the vehicle by the DMV, and clean arrest record from MPD.

Is there a permission slip that parents must sign?

Students will enroll through the school.  Contact your school administration or DC School Connect staff for more information on eligibility and enrollment.

 Will students have to produce ID to ride bus?

Yes, ID and barcode

Who do I call if there are issues with a driver, route, or schedule?

Please call our Hotline to report any issues. (855-453-0613)

Who do I call if there are issues with a driver, route, or schedule?

Please call our Hotline to report any issues.