RACINE — RYDE Racine wants to get students to the classroom. Local educational institutions have partnered with RYDE Racine to provide transit services before.
After almost a two-year hiatus from such a partnership due to COVID-19, Racine Unified School District and Gateway Technical College will utilize the City of Racine’s public transportation system to transport students from home to campus and back, according to a news release from the city.
RYDE Racine will make its existing routes available to RUSD. In addition to its current routes and frequency, supplemental school routes will be provided based on RUSD’s schools’ schedules. These services will be provided Mondays through Fridays, with the exception of days when school is not in session.
According to state requirements, RUSD offers free transportation to families living outside a two-mile radius of their child’s boundary school, but not for those inside that radius.
Students and their families can also purchase bus passes at a discounted, month-to-month rate. Parents can buy the passes at RUSD’s administration building, 3109 Mt. Pleasant St. They can only be used on school days for travel to and from school, and will be cheaper in months without a full-class schedule.
“We are happy to partner once again with RYDE to provide transportation to and from school for some of our students,” stated RUSD Superintendent Eric Gallien. “Additionally, I’m excited that families will be able to purchase discounted bus passes. We know that school attendance directly impacts student achievement, so we need our children to be in school every day. We’re grateful for the city’s partnership in helping make this happen.”
A new partnership
In addition to renewing the partnership between RUSD and the City of Racine, Gateway Technical College will also provide access to RYDE Racine’s transit services.
Students of the technical college will be eligible to receive an annual pass for fixed-route public transportation services, a new benefit of being enrolled at Gateway. This two-year program will provide 300 student passes per year.
“Providing access to Gateway services speaks directly to our mission,” stated Gateway Technical College President and CEO Bryan Albrecht. “We are proud to partner with the City of Racine to expand student mobility through bus passes and increased utilization of the city transit system.”
The final touches are being put on the method and timing to distribute the bus passes to Gateway students. Gateway’s first official day of the Fall 2022 semester is Sept. 6, and those interested should check the Gateway website for further information, gtc.edu.
“The City of Racine understands it must play a role in expanding access to education and breaking down barriers,” stated Racine Mayor Cory Mason. “Transportation access to quality public education is critical to the success of our community. From longstanding partnerships, to new, innovative ones, the RYDE Racine is ready to take students where they need to go.”
Credit: Journal Times Staff. RYDE Racine partners with RUSD, Gateway to provide transit for students. The Journal Times. 18 August 2022.