Philadelphia school district offering parents $150 a month to opt out of district transportation

Applications for the district's Parent Flat Rate Pilot Program are due Friday.
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The School District of Philadelphia is offering parents monthly financial assistance to take their children to school instead of using school bus, van or cab assignment services when in-person classes resume.

The district will start classes online on September 2, but some school buses will still be rolling.

"The district is responsible for providing transportation for all students who reside in the city of Philadelphia, not just for the district schools, but for charter, private schools as well," said district spokesperson Monica Lewis.

Lewis said about 150 schools will be doing some sort of in-person learning over the next couple of months.

Due to safety concerns during the pandemic, the district is offering parents an alternative that comes with money- $150 every month per household for parents who apply to take their kids to school instead of letting them ride the bus or use other district transportation.

It's part of an initiative called Parent Flat Rate Pilot Program.

"We understand that many parents feel a little unsure about sending their children out or going out on their own in situations where they can't control the environment around them," Lewis said.

Lewis said the concern during these uncertain times is why the district is offering money to help cover transportation expenses.

The Parent Flat Rate Pilot Program begins when your school is open for some form of in-person learning, according to Lewis.

The district is also taking measures for parents who have no choice but to let their kids ride the school bus.

"We have a protocol in place where our drivers will make sure that their buses are disinfected on a regular basis and make sure that the students are safe," Lewis said.

It's important to apply for the Parent Flat Rate Pilot Program on the district's website before the extended deadline of Friday, August 28th.
Copyright © 2020 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.