Transportation Eligibility Guidelines

The eligibility requirements for students in the District are based on mileage, grade level of student, location and residency.

Yellow Bus Transportation is typically provided for students in grades 1 through 6 who live 1.5 miles or more from the assigned school.  Students in grades 7 through 12 who live 1.5 miles or farther from school are eligible for free Student TransPasses.

If your child requires additional transportation supports or has Special Needs, please visit our Special Needs Transportation page for more information.

There may be additional special exceptions around a student’s transportation. For more information contact your school.


The Department of Transportation Services uses a web-based routing application called COMPASS which utilizes the leading geographic information system (GIS) platform from Esri. The Scheduling Department will use COMPASS to map routes based on eligibility information in the system and is responsible for determining final transportation assignments for Philadelphia resident students. We don’t utilize any other geographic mapping or data from other programs in our routing process.  If you would like to estimate the distance from your home address to school, we have found that using Google’s Walking Directions often matches the distance provided by COMPASS.

What type of bus stop will my student be assigned?

  • All regular education students will be placed at a corner stop. Most corner stops are within 1.5 miles from the student’s home.
  • All Special Education students will be assigned to a stop based on what is indicated in their Individualized Education Plan (IEP). In most cases, the stop will be a curb-to-curb pick-up at the home which means the bus will meet the student at the curb/sidewalk in front of the stop. It does not mean that the driver or attendant will meet the student at their door.

In the event that the driver is not able to make it down the street due to weather or obstructions, the driver or bus attendant for the route will come down the block to meet the child and bring him or her to the bus.