It’s a project a year in the making — now the Regina catholic and public school divisions are finding a way to offer joint bus services next year.
About 560 kids from the joint use school in southeast Regina in the Greens on Gardiner will share bus services provided by the catholic division.
The announcement comes after significant consultations between both school divisions which took safety, reliability and convenience to families into consideration.
It is hoped this pilot project will save money, reduce emissions and limit school bus traffic on city streets.
“We don’t have an exact amount of money this will save at this time, but we are looking at reducing three to four buses,” explained Greg Enion, director of Regina Public Schools. “Both school divisions will be taking a look at the data, cost analysis to see what we have saved, talking to our stakeholders as well.”
The pilot project nearly didn’t come together.
As little as a couple of days before the announcement, the two sides still had to reach an agreement on bell times.
This pilot project will run for the 2018-19 school year and, if successful, it is hoped it will be extended to other schools.
“I’m fairly confident that when the school year ends and we have a look at the data, we’re going to come to the realization that this is something we are going to what to have a look at further,” said Dominic Scuglia, director of Regina Catholic Schools.
A number of adjustments have been made at the two schools as a result.
Students at École Wascana Plains School will start and finish eight minutes earlier than this year — 8:45 a.m. to 3:29 p.m.
École St. Elizabeth School students will start and finish five minutes later than this year — 8:50 a.m. to 3:25 p.m.
Impacted families may also find there are changes to pick-up and drop-off times and some students may be required to walk to collector stops to be picked up by the bus.