Saturday, November 26, 2022
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Wednesday, September 14, 2022
Free County Bus Passes Answer to School Bus Driver Shortage
By News Release @ 6:51 PM :: 833 Views :: Education K-12

EXPRESS PILOT WILL EXPAND STUDENT RIDERSHIP OPTIONS WITH COUNTY BUS PASSES

News Release from DoE, Sep 12, 2022

HONOLULU — The Hawaiʻi State Department of Education (HIDOE) is launching a pilot program with the four counties to expand subsidized county bus passes for high schoolers in grades 9-12. The pilot program — called EXPRESS, which stands for Expanding Ridership to Educate Students in Schools — aims to help mitigate the impacts of the national school bus driver shortage.

Expanding free bus transportation services to all high school students under the EXPRESS program also stands to benefit more than 21,000 students — or 47% of high school students — who are currently ineligible because they live within the walk zone of their school campus. 

The goal is to increase high school student ridership on county bus services so that underutilized school buses can be reassigned to restore canceled and consolidated routes.

“Like other school districts across the nation, Hawaiʻi is addressing a shortage of school bus drivers that has led to canceled routes, schedule delays and passenger waitlists, as our contractors work hard to maintain services with fewer drivers,” Superintendent Keith Hayashi said. “We started this school year down roughly 90 bus drivers, and every bus we can reassign will help us to prioritize impacted routes at our elementary and intermediate schools. We thank our county transportation partners and our high school students for being a part of the solution.”

Interested students with an active HIDOE student ID number may sign up online beginning today, Sept. 12, 2022, at iportal.k12.hi.us/express.

“Approximately 6,000 high school students currently use school bus service to get to and from school statewide,” said Student Transportation Services Administrator Emily Evans. “Students who choose to participate in EXPRESS gain access to a means of transportation that isn’t limited to school transportation; they are free to use their pass as needed.”

Approved applicants will receive a confirmation and their county bus pass directly through their school. Oʻahu recipients will receive one county pass that will be valid through July 2023. The City & County of Honolulu will be funding the cost of passes on Oʻahu for June and July 2023. Recipients on Kauaʻi, Maui and Hawai‘i Island will receive passes good for each month through July 2023. (Public transit on Hawai‘i County’s Hele-On Bus is already a free fare service that can be utilized at any time.)

“The City and County of Honolulu’s TheBus is proud to partner with the State Department of Education to deliver transit to Hawaiʻi’s high school students,” City Department of Transportation Services Deputy Director Jon Nouchi said. “These students will learn early the benefits and independence transit can offer them, and may use their rides on TheBus to reach destinations beyond their schools, in their community, and even the job market. Developing students into new transit riders is timely and provides an efficient way for our keiki to access education.”

“Maui County’s partnership with the Department of Education extends beyond the classroom,” said Mayor Michael Victorino. “We are happy to offer free passes to students who can ride the Maui Bus to school to help mitigate the temporary shortage of school bus drivers. We hope it helps to fill an important need.”

“Since the beginning of the school year, we’ve seen an increase in student ridership on our Kaua‘i Bus routes islandwide,” Celia Mahikoa, executive for the County of Kaua‘i Transportation Agency said. “We thank the Hawai‘i Department of Education for providing these free bus passes as we know it will be a welcome help to our local families in need, and we look forward to our continued partnership as we work together to help our keiki get to school.”

Parents and guardians will be responsible for locating the nearest county bus route to and from their student’s school and for finding the safest walking routes to and from the nearest bus stops. Public transportation safety tips are available at bit.ly/HIDOE-EXPRESS.

Students who have already paid for a second quarter pass or bus coupons may request a refund after receiving their county bus pass at bit.ly/STSB-refund. School bus refund requests should be made only after receiving the county bus pass to avoid premature deactivation of the school bus pass.

ADA and Paratransit services are not included in this program. For more information, visit bit.ly/HIDOEstudent-transportation.

###

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

808 Silent Majority

ACA Signups Hawaii

Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Astronomy Hawaii

Back da Blue Hawaii

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

ChinaTownWatch.com

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Life Alliance

Hawaii March for Life 

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together

HIEC.Coop

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

July 4 in Hawaii

Kakaako Cares

Keep Hawaii's Heroes

Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

Natatorium.org

National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

OurFutureHawaii.com

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

P.U.E.O.

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

ReRoute the Rail

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Save Dillingham Airfield

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

Sink the Jones Act

Statehood for Guam

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

UCC Truths

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

VAREP Honolulu

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii

Yes2TMT