At HWDSB, student transportation is provided by the consortium Hamilton-Wentworth Student Transportation Services (HWSTS). HWSTS provides safe, effective and efficient transportation services to eligible students at HWDSB as well as Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board. This may take the form of traditional yellow-and-black school buses, school purpose vans or Hamilton Street Railway transit.
Transportation Policy Consultation
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB) is gathering public feedback on the possibility of changing the walking distance for Junior and Senior Kindergarten students in its Transportation Policy. The proposed change is to increase school walking distance from 1.0 kms to 1.2 kms.
There are two main reasons HWDSB is looking at this possible change:
- HWDSB is currently experiencing a driver shortage. In a motion on May 28, 2018, the Board of Trustees asked staff to look at ways (including policy changes) that would help reduce the driver shortage.
- To align HWDSB’s walking distances with that of the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board.
Delays in 2018-19
HWSTS has advised Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board (HWCDSB) and Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB) that a bus driver shortage may impact local school bus routes. HWSTS is working with the local bus companies to try to minimize the impact on students. Families are encouraged to sign up for email notifications of delays and cancellations on the HWSTS website www.hamiltonschoolbus.ca.
To address this shortage, HWSTS encourages you or anyone you know to consider applying to become a bus driver. Bus companies are focusing their driver recruitment efforts with advertisements in various newspapers, radio, TV and through employment open houses. Together HWSTS and the Hamilton school boards are promoting school bus driver employment opportunities to parents/guardians and the community.
Interested applicants are encouraged to contact the following bus companies about job requirements:
Phone: 905-690-2632, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: 905-692-4488, Email: email@example.com
First Student Canada
Phone: 905-304-5846, Email: Helen.Ruber@firstgroup.com
Sharp Bus Lines
Phone: 905-679-0001, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Updates on Delays
Any bus delays will be shared by email with families who have signed up for HWSTS notifications. Delays will also be posted on the www.hamiltonschoolbus.ca website and the websites of any affected HWDSB and HWCDSB schools. See Schools Affected by Delays below for a list of schools anticipating bus delays.
Frequently Asked Questions about HWDSB transportation…
Schools Affected by Delays
Updated Sept 20, 2018:
Serious Delays due to QEW Road Closure
A number of bus routes servicing HWDSB schools are facing long delays due to a QEW road closure east and westbound. Eastbound is closed at Centennial Parkway and Westbound is closed at Fruitland Road. The closures are resulting in major gridlock. Route 6259 to Orchard Park is currently not serviceable and school officials have been notified by operator. Watch hamiltonschoolbus.ca for updates from operators. All routes will be serviced in the afternoon.
In addition, we have been informed that bus delays may occur at the following schools (updated Nov. 9, 2018):
Allan A. Greenleaf
Ecole Michaelle Jean
Prince of Wales
Sir Isaac Brock
Sir John A. Macdonald
Sir Wilfrid Laurier
How do I know if my child is eligible for transportation?
Students residing within all urban and rural areas as defined by the “Official Plans” and prepared by the local municipality, will be eligible for transportation services to their in-catchment school when the walking distance exceeds the following:
- Elementary School, Kindergarten students: 1.0 km
- Elementary School, grades 1 to 8 students, 1.6 km
- Secondary School, grades 9 to 12 students, 3.2 km
Learn more in the HWDSB Transportation Policy.
How am I notified of a bus delay?
HWSTS maintains a Parent Portal. By registering with this tool, families can receive email updates when a morning or afternoon bus delay occurs. Delays are also found on the HWSTS website.
In addition, bus delays are posted to the website of the affected HWDSB schools. To avoid duplication with the HWSTS portal, HWDSB does not send its website subscribers a second email about a bus delay.
How do I contact transportation staff?
Families are encouraged to visit the HWSTS website to learn more, and to feel free to contact the HWSTS offices at (905) 523-2318 or 1-800-691-6402 with any questions.
How does severe winter weather affect transportation at HWDSB?
The decision to remain open or to close is always made with the safety and security of our students and staff in mind. When a decision to close is made, it is does so in conjunction with our colleagues at the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board based on relevant information at that time.
School Boards across Ontario have varying polices about the cancellation of schools. At HWDSB, the cancellation of transportation due to inclement weather immediately triggers the closure of our schools.
Please remember, as a parent/guardian you always have the choice on whether or not to send your child to school. HWDSB will NOT post a weather alert on its website to signal that schools are open.
Frequently Asked Questions about HWSTS…
Please visit the HWSTS FAQ web page.