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Frequently Asked Questions

How does my child get to school?

The City School District of Albany transports all eligible students -- those who live 1.5 miles or more from their school -- either by yellow bus or Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA) bus.


Eligible elementary-school children are transported via yellow bus, operated by First Student Inc. The district provides a CDTA bus pass, also known as a swiper card, to eligible middle- and high-school students.


Who is First Student?
First Student is the company that provides the district with yellow-bus transportation. First Student is a national company and a leader in school transportation across North America. Learn more about First Student at


How does CDTA transport middle- and high-school students?
The district swiper card is accepted on all CDTA buses and valid during the school year. It allows students to ride the bus Monday-Friday from the time CDTA service begins (most routes start between 5-6 a.m.) and provides transportation to after-school programs anywhere in the city.


Students must have their passes with them at all times and will be required to swipe their card through the fare box to get on a CDTA bus. If a student does not have a pass when boarding a CDTA bus, he or she will be required to pay the appropriate fare to complete the trip. The current one-way fare is $1.50.


Students must report the loss of a pass to the school district immediately. Applications to replace lost passes may be found at each school. There is a fee to replace a bus pass. Damaged or invalid cards may be exchanged for a replacement.


How do I find out what bus route my child is on?
During the last week in August, parents receive a letter from the City School District of Albany Transportation Department that lists important information such as their child's name, address, bus route number and school bus pickup site.


If any information in this letter is incorrect, please inform the Transportation Department (475-6170) as soon as possible. During the first few days of school, it would be helpful for students to use the letter as a pass to board the yellow bus until the driver becomes familiar with his/her riders.


How does the Transportation Department plan bus routes?
All bus routes and pickup times are scheduled according to the information provided in student transportation request applications.


If your residence has changed, you must update that information at the district's Central Registration office, located at 75 Watervliet Ave., in the former Harriet Gibbons High School building.


Where is my child's bus stop?
School bus pick-up and drop-off sites are designated neighborhood sites. If you do not receive a letter in August from the Transportation Department indicating where your child will be pick up and dropped off from school, please call 475-6170.


What if my child misbehaves on the bus?
The district expects that all students will conduct themselves properly on all school-related transportation. Pupils who are disorderly or insubordinate (disobey school-bus safety rules) may have their riding privileges suspended. Repeat offenders may have their riding privileges permanently revoked. In such cases, the parents or guardians become responsible for getting their children to and from school.


When riding CDTA buses, students are expected to follow CDTA rules and regulations and are subject to the CDTA Code of Conduct, which outlines expected behavior for all riders and ensures that everyone receives the best service possible. The Code of Conduct can be found online at


Who are the crossing guards?
Our crossing guards work for the Albany Police Department. The school works closely with the police department to ensure proper crossing-guard coverage of any routes our students travel.


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