Frequently Asked Questions

Is my child eligible for transportation?
Eligibility for student transportation services is determined by the HWSTS Member Boards' policies. Please refer to the following policy documents for details:
  1. HWDSB Transportation Policy
  2. HWCDSB Transportation Policy
or contact our offices for more information.
If I am eligible for service and wish to be taken to an ALTERNATE ADDRESS, can this be accommodated?
Alternate Address requests MAY be granted in situations where the request meets the defined Board eligibility criteria, presents NO additional costs, utilizes EXISTING bus stops and presents NO negative impact to the existing bus route / eligible riders. Eligibility assessments will be based on the regular/normal home address of the student. Please contact our offices for further details.
I do not think the bus stop location is safe. What can I do?
Contact HWSTS. The stop location will be reviewed by a Transportation Officer and a decision made which may or may not result in the stop being changed.

The types of concerns typically raised by parents are no sidewalks, traffic speed, no posted school zone signs, no cross walks, no crossing guards, and no railroad crossing signs and/or construction. These potential concerns are under the jurisdiction of the municipality and HWSTS may not consider these types of situations as safety concerns in and of themselves.

Due to the volume of requests for stop location reviews received in September, these will be reviewed in October.
Why are there no seatbelts on buses?
After considerable crash testing, Transport Canada determined that seatbelts might actually cause more harm to students on school buses. Tests revealed that occupants who were wearing lap belts were more likely to suffer serious head and neck injuries. Also, shoulder belts can not be adjusted to safely restrain smaller children. If seatbelts were on school buses, younger children would require an adult to buckle/unbuckle the occupant and this could be problematic in an emergency situation. For more information on this topic, check out the Ministry of Transportation website.
My child has a long bus ride. Why can’t he/she have a snack or a drink on the ride home from school?
Eating and drinking are not allowed on the bus for safety reasons such as:
  • A child could choke on a piece of food and with the high seat backs and noise on the bus, the driver may not be aware of the situation until it is too late.
  • Left over food and drink not only causes a mess, but can attract bees and wasps
  • Some students have a very severe reaction to bee stings and to some foods such as peanut butter.
I am moving. Who do I need to notify?
Contact the school and register your child, or, if the school remains unchanged, provide the new address information to the existing school.

HWSTS arranges transportation based on the information provided by the school.
I am concerned about the Behaviour on My child’s bus. Can I request another bus for him/her?
Requesting another vehicle is not a good solution, as it fails to deal with the problem causing your concern. The Education Act does not mandate school boards to provide transportation services. Rather, the Act states that school boards “may” provide transportation. Therefore, transportation is a privilege, not a right. A student’s inappropriate behaviour may lead to the withdrawal of transportation services. If you have concerns about the behaviour on the bus, contact the Principal of your child’s school.
My child left their backpack/item on the bus. Who do I contact?
Contact the bus company for lost items. Be ready to provide the school and bus number to the bus company.
How do I set up transportation for my child in a special needs class?
All requests for special needs transportation (including disabilities) need to go through the school principal. If the request requires further approvals, the principal will contact our office or the appropriate departments at the school board.
Does the HWSTS office close at the end of June like a school?
The HWSTS office is open all year round. The summer months are ideal planning months as regular schools are closed. We encourage parents to contact us during the summer.