Frequently Asked Questions

General Information for Regular Ed Busing


What do I need to do to sign my child up for the bus?

You don't need to do anything! All students in grades K-12 that are eligible to/from their primary household are automatically routed. If you need transportation to/from a secondary household or child care provider, please see the information below regarding those requests. 4K students need to request busing through the 4K office.

How do I know if my child is eligible for busing?

Elementary students that live more than 1.0 mile from the school in their attendance area are eligible for busing services. Middle, upper middle, and high school students that live more than 1.5 miles from the school in their attendance area are eligible to receive busing services. Students that live outside of the eligible busing area to the school in their attendance area may receive busing if that area is considered “unusually hazardous,” as determined by the Dane County Sheriff's Department, according to State Statute 121.54(9). The Sun Prairie Area School District’s unusually hazardous busing areas can be found in Exhibit EE-E.

You can verify your household’s busing eligibility by using the Attendance Area/Busing Eligibility Interactive Map, found on the Busing and Transportation page, or by clicking here. Select your child’s school, type in your address, and click the “find address” button. The map will bring you to your home and show you either blue or red (if the address is in the school’s attendance area). Blue means the address is in the walking area to the selected school and is not eligible for busing. Red means the address is eligible for busing to the selected school. If the address does not show as blue or red, this means it is outside of the attendance area to the selected school, and is therefore not eligible for busing. You can click on the parcel for more information regarding which attendance area (elementary and middle school) the address is in, as well as busing eligibility for each of the four levels (elementary, middle, upper middle, and high school).

My child is not eligible for busing according to the map. Can you make an exception?

Unfortunately, the District cannot make an exception. The busing eligibility distances are set by the taxpayers (either at the Annual Meeting or a Special Electors Meeting) and therefore the District cannot allow non-eligible students to ride.

Where can I find my child’s busing information?

Parents can view their child’s busing information for the regular school year through the Infinite Campus Parent Portal. Busing information will be uploaded at least two weeks before the start of school. Parents do not need to do anything to sign their child up for busing to/from their primary address - all busing eligible students are automatically routed to/from their primary address prior to the start of each school year.

Bus stops/routes are not published in the newspaper or on the District website. If you have specific questions regarding a bus stop or route, please contact Kobussen at 825-8700.

What does my child need in order to ride the bus?

Busing eligible students will receive a bus tag prior to the beginning of the school year. Each busing eligible student must have his/her bus tag in order to ride the bus. Drivers will be periodically checking bus tags throughout the school year. If a student does not present the driver with a bus tag, he/she will not be allowed to ride. If your student carries a smartphone, he/she may take a picture of the bus tag and present that in lieu of having the physical tag.

Bus tags for the 2016-17 school year will be distributed in the following ways:

  • Students in grades 6-12 will receive their bus tags during Chromebook Kickoff at Patrick Marsh Middle School the week of August 22-26. Information about this event was sent out early August and can also be found on the District website, or by clicking here.

  • Students in grades K-5 will receive their bus tags at their school’s Ready-Set-Go/Read & Greet. Information about these events was sent out to families in late July/early August.

  • Students in 5th grade that will be attending Patrick Marsh or Prairie View will receive their bus tag when they get their picture taken for their ID at Patrick Marsh the week of August 22-26, or at their Meet & Greet (Patrick Marsh - August 30, 3-5 PM; Prairie View - August 29, 4-5:30 PM).

If you are unable to get your child’s bus tag at one of these events, or if your child loses/damages his/her bus tag at any point during the school year, he/she can receive a replacement tag at no cost from his/her school secretary. Bus tags will not be distributed by staff at the District Office.

Does my child need to have his/her bus tag everyday?

Yes. While drivers will not be checking every tag every day, they will do periodic checks throughout the school year. If a student does not have his/her bus tag, he/she will not be allowed to ride the bus. If your student carries a smartphone, he/she may take a picture of the bus tag and present that in lieu of having the physical tag. Zip ties are available at all bus tag distributions, as well as at your child’s school office, to attach the bus tag to your child’s backpack.

Where can I get a new bus tag if my child loses or damages his/hers?

Your child can receive a replacement bus tag at no cost from his/her school secretary.

My child resides with me half the time and his/her other parent the other half. How do I get busing for my child from both houses?

You will need to complete the Request for Transportation to/from a Secondary Household form, found on the Busing and Transportation page, or by clicking here. This form must be completed before the start of each new school year; requests do not carry over from previous years.

In order to approve these requests, the following requirements must be met:

  1. The form must be filled out completely and submitted electronically.

  2. The secondary household must be in the busing eligible area for your child’s school. To verify the eligibility of your child’s secondary household, please check the Attendance Area/Busing Eligibility Interactive Map.

  3. The secondary household information must be in Infinite Campus. If you are unsure if the District has this information, please contact Laurie Assalone in our Technology department (laassal@sunprairieschools.org or 834-6571).

Requests before the start of the school year will be processed as quickly as possible. After the school year begins it may take a week or more to add the secondary household to a route. You will be notified via email once the request has been processed. If approved, you will receive your child’s busing information in that email message. Your child will need to get a bus tag from the school secretary before he/she can begin riding. If the request is denied you will notified in that message as to why.

Please remember that it is the responsibility of the parent and child to know their own schedule. The District is not responsible for keeping track of which address a child is going to on any given day.

My child needs busing to/from child care. How do I set that up?

You will need to complete the Request for Transportation to/from a Child Care Provider form, found on the Busing and Transportation page, or by clicking here. This form must be completed before the start of each new school year; requests do not carry over from previous years.

In order to approve these requests, the following requirements must be met:

  1. The form must be filled out completely and submitted electronically.

  2. The child care provider’s address must be in the busing eligible area to your child’s school. To verify the eligibility of your child care provider’s address, please check the Attendance Area/Busing Eligibility Interactive Map.

  3. The child care provider’s address must be near a current bus route. No additional stops will be added and routes will not be altered for these requests.

  4. There must be room available on the bus to accommodate additional riders. This means it may take until after the third week of school before requests can be approved so the District has time to track ridership and determine if there is room to accommodate these requests.

Requests before the start of the school year will be processed as quickly as possible, but may take until after the third week of school to approve. After the school year begins, it may take a week or more to add the student to a route. You will be notified via email once the request has been processed. If approved, you will receive your child’s busing information in that email message. Your child will need to get a bus tag from the school secretary before he/she can begin riding. If the request is denied you will notified in that message as to why.

Please remember that it is the responsibility of the parent and child to know their own schedule. The District is not responsible for keeping track of which address a child is going to on any given day.

We just moved and need to know my child’s new busing information. Where can I find this?

Your child’s new busing information can be found in Infinite Campus Parent Portal after you have notified the District of your address change. If the address is in a busing eligible area and is near an existing stop the change will be in Infinite Campus the following day. If the address is not near an existing stop the new information should be in Infinite Campus within a week after the change. Kobussen needs time to create a new stop and add it to the route, which can take some time, especially right before and after the start of a new school year.

Please notify the District of your new address as soon as possible. Addresses can be post-dated to go into effect at a future date. In this situation, the new busing information would be in Infinite Campus five days before the effective change date of the address.

Your child will need a new bus tag once he/she has received the new busing information in Infinite Campus. Please have your child go to his/her school’s office to get a new bus tag from the secretary.

If you need to update your address, you may do so through the Infinite Campus Parent Portal, or by contacting Laurie Assalone in our Technology department (laassal@sunprairieschools.org or 834-6571). Please include Proof of Residency in your email.

What is the maximum length of time for a bus route?

In accordance with Procedure EE-R, Section (II)(C)(6), under normal conditions, the maximum amount of time an individual student may be expected to ride the bus one way is one hour, with the exception of the after school activity bus and summer school. This time period does not include the time after discharge at the school or the load time after school.

On rare occasions, a bus may be delayed, causing a student’s ride time to exceed one hour. We will make every effort to avoid this happening and will make adjustments to routes as needed. There is no state law which limits ride times.

I cannot see the bus stop from my house. The bus drives right past my house. Why can’t it stop at my house?

Wisconsin law does not require the District to provide door-to-door general school bus service. Procedure EE-R, Section (II)(C)(1) states that students may be required to walk to a bus stop location beyond the intersection of their home’s driveway and the public road. The general guideline is that the distance a student is expected to walk shall be no more than 1.0 mile for students in grades K-12. In order to reduce the number of stops and accommodate more than 5,000 eligible riders efficiently, students may be required to meet the bus at a corner or park. Higher frequency of stops made by a bus increases the dangers for an accident because of impatient motorists and increasing the number of stops, which will then cause the ride time to be longer. If you have concerns about your child's safety, you are encouraged to accompany your child to the bus stop or arrange a neighborhood buddy to walk with your child.

I have a concern regarding my child’s bus stop and would like it changed. What do I need to do?

In accordance with Procedure EE-R, Section (II)(B), the following factors will generally be used in determining the routing and scheduling of each bus and the location of bus stops:

  1. The length of time any one student would be required to remain on the bus.

  2. The proximity of bus stops to students’ residences.

  3. Safe practices in bus operation.

  4. School schedules.

  5. Other practices intended to ensure safety and reasonableness of operation.

If a parent still has a concern and would like the stop reviewed for a possible change, then the Bus Stop Change Request form must be completed. This form can be found on the Busing and Transportation page of the District website or by clicking here. The District will not be reviewing any requests for bus stop changes until after the first three weeks of school, unless the request is to move the child to an existing bus stop on the same route. Parents will be informed via email when the request is approved or denied. If the request is approved, the student will need to get a new bus tag from the school secretary.

The District makes every effort to make stops safe for students and within a reasonable walking distance from their homes. There are currently over 5,000 eligible busing students in grades 4K-12, and providing doorside pickup for each student is not feasible. If parents are concerned about younger students walking to a bus stop, they are encouraged to accompany their child to the bus stop or arrange a neighborhood child to walk with their child.

My child missed the bus/the bus is running late. Who should I contact?

Please contact Kobussen at 825-8700. If the bus arrived and left the stop before the scheduled pickup time they will send the driver back to pick up any students that were missed. Families are encouraged to have their child waiting at the stop at least five minutes prior to the scheduled pickup time. If the bus is running late, Kobussen will be able to give you an estimate as to when the bus will arrive at the stop.

My child left something on the bus. Who should I contact?

Please contact Kobussen at 825-8700.

I have a concern about my child’s bus driver/other children on the bus/bullying, etc. Who should I contact?

Your first point of contact should be your child’s school principal for any concerns regarding student behavior on the bus. He/she can talk with your child and any other students involved in the incident and determine any necessary disciplinary measures that need to be taken. If you have a concern regarding your child’s bus driver, please contact Kobussen at 825-8700. They will review the concern and contact the appropriate District personnel.

 

Helpful Links

 

SPASD Transportation Policy

SPASD Transportation Procedure

SPASD Unusual Hazardous Transportation Plan

SPASD Busing and Transportation webpage

Infinite Campus Parent Portal

Attendance Area/Busing Eligibility Interactive Map

Kobussen Busses Ltd. website

Department of Public Instruction: Pupil Transportation Home Page

 

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Melissa Bautz
Payroll Assistant/Secretary Business Services
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(608) 834-6699
Rhonda Page
Business Services Manager
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(608) 834-6512
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