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Start of School Transportation

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Transportation Priority: Five Things to Know | Key Dates & DeadlinesKey Resources


Five Things to Know

  1. OSSE DOT provides an LEA reimbursement policy for special circumstances at the start of school to ensure all eligible students have access to transportation when their school year begins.
  1. Students who are new to your LEA in 2020-21 will not appear in the TOTE until the LEA where the student was previously enrolled exits the students, and you, the LEA receiving the student, have transitioned your student information systems to the new school year.
  1. The deadline for submitting transportation request forms (TRFs) for returning students that will be receiving in-person services for the 2020-21 school year is Friday, July 24, 2020; this will provide OSSE with enough time to build and practice the bus routes. For students that are new to your LEA, please submit TRFs as soon as possible. We encourage LEAs for new student requests, as well as requests that are delayed due to school scheduling decisions to consider utilizing either parent or LEA reimbursement during the start of the school year until transportation is appropriately scheduled.
  1. OSSE has up to ten days to prepare safe, secure, and efficient routes in processing TRFs. Due to the current health pandemic please refer to any additional communication provided by OSSE DOT regarding request processing time.
  1. The routing of eligible students and timely delivery of transportation services are dependent upon timely and accurate student data submission via the TRF (i.e., sharing student address, attending school, telephone numbers, etc.).

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Key Dates & Deadlines

Type Description Date
Training Attend one of the mandatory (Transportation Online Tool for Education) TOTE trainings to receive important and updated information on entering data for students eligible for transportation service. Training will be offered virtually for better accessibility and reduce any in-person contact. Access to the application will be granted upon training completion. Register Dates will be added throughout the summer
Training OSSE offers a monthly webinar open to LEA SE and transportation POCs; each meeting will share important information for preparing for the new school year. Register July 15
Training Any LEA transportation POC who has not yet been trained on TOTE 2.0 is required to attend an introductory session to become familiar with the platform. [Register] Additional training sessions will be held on Wednesdays throughout July and August. July 21
Training LEA Transportation POCs in their role for two or fewer years must attend orientation training to learn about the LEA reimbursement policy, planning transportation services for eligible students, leveraging key data reports, and resolving data errors. Register July 21
Deadline Upload school calendars in TOTE so that TRFs can be submitted. July 24
Deadline Submit all transportation request forms in TOTE for returning students. July 24
Training OSSE offers a monthly webinar open to LEA SE and transportation POCs; each meeting will share important information for preparing for the new school year. Register Aug. 19
Deadline Submit all transportation request forms in TOTE for students who are new to your LEA. Two weeks before a student's first day of school

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Key Resources

  • LEA Transportation Checklist for 2020-21 School Year: This document outlines transportation related tasks for LEAs to complete for the start of 2020-21 school year. This checklist is developed for LEAs that have students who are eligible for transportation services.
  • LEA Start of School Year Transportation Reimbursement Guidelines: These guidelines describe OSSE’s policy for reimbursing LEAs that provide their own transportation to eligible students for up to the first 20 days of the 2020-21 school year in the unusual instance that the LEA is unable to arrange transportation through OSSE DOT at no fault of its own.
  • Parent Resource Center: The Parent Resource Center (PRC) is the communication link between the Division of Student Transportation, parents/guardians, LEAs, and schools and can be reached at (202) 576-5000 from 5 a.m.-7 p.m., Monday through Friday. LEAs can contact the PRC for information about the routes that service their schools and transportation details of their students.
  • TOTE Quickstart Guide: Provides instruction on navigating through TOTE and accurately entering transportation information into TOTE for eligible students requiring transportation for the regular school year and the extended school year.
  • TOTE Support Line: The TOTE support team is available to assist with any TOTE related issues and assistance in submitting certification data. The TOTE Support Line can be reached at (202) 576-5520 from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. or [email protected], Monday through Friday.

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