Transportation » FAQs for Families

FAQs for Families

How do I go about getting my child on the school bus?

WVSD students must be registered to ride the school bus. The link to register can be found on the Transportation home page. Please be advised that it can take up to 7 school days to arrange transportation for a new bus rider or to accommodate changes for an existing rider. Families of students enrolled in West Valley Early Learning Center, McKinney-Vento/HEART program, or Special Education should contact their school to request transportation which will then be coordinated with the WVSD router. 


I have a student with special needs. How do I arrange for transportation services?

Please contact your child's special needs teacher or WVSD Special Services at (509) 927-1138 for assistance in determining if your student meets the necessary criteria for special services transportation. 


How is my student assigned to a bus stop?

The computer system assigns students to the closest bus stop.


Can my student get on at one bus stop in the morning and get off at a different stop at the end of the day?
Safety and consistency are essential with transportation so your student’s AM and PM stops should be the same. However, there may be extenuating circumstances (i.e. daycare, custodial issues) that affect your student’s transportation. Please contact the Transportation Department by email or phone to convey the situation.


Can my student ride the school bus with another student? 

WAC 392-145-060 (1) states: “A school bus driver shall not order or allow a student to depart the bus other than at his/her regular stop unless permission is first obtained in accordance with district policy”.
To ensure the safety of your child and their peers, the current WVSD Transportation policy is that students are not permitted to ride a school bus of which they are not a registered rider (i.e. riding the bus home with a friend). Please be aware that in the event that a student attempts to board a school bus of which they are not a registered rider, the student will be directed to return to their assigned school bus or to the school office to arrange alternate transportation. 


Can my Kindergarten or West Valley Early Learning Center student ride the bus?

Yes, in most cases. Please contact your school secretary to review the eligibility criteria and determine whether or not your student is eligible. If your child is a special needs student, please contact your student's teacher or District Special Services at (509) 927-1138 to begin the process for transportation services. 


Please note that Millwood Kindergarten, West Valley Early Learning Center, and Special Education students are not allowed to exit their school bus unless a parent/guardian is present or written permission has been provided to the student’s school.


Visit the Resources & Forms tab to find the Parent Authorization for Student Drop-off Form to apprise WVSD of the name and number of individual(s) authorized to meet your student at the bus stop, including an older sibling. Please sign and return the completed form to the school.


The bus passes my house, why can’t it stop and pick up my child?

Our school buses pass by many students’ homes on their way to school or other stops. A bus can only make so many stops on a route and still get to school on time. 


Will the bus routes and schedules stay the same every school year?

Basic education bus routes will be similar year after year; however, we do make revisions throughout the year, if necessary. When changes are made to a route that affects stop times, we will notify the school, parents/guardians and/or students. 

Does West Valley have areas where no bus service is provided?
Yes, there are certain roads in the district that buses do not travel for a variety of reasons. Some may be seasonal restrictions due to hazards brought about by ice and snow while others are year-round and can be due to road grade steepness or the ability to safely travel and navigate the road (mostly in the northern area of our district). If you have a question about a particular road, please contact the transportation office at (509) 922-5467. 


How do I get my child to school if he/she can't ride the school bus?

The parent/guardian is the most knowledgeable about the child's abilities and is in the best position to choose the safest and most appropriate way in their area to get the child safely to and from school. Some options for consideration include: walking with a parent/guardian; walking in a group with other students/parents; being driven to school (by a parent/guardian, grandparents, friends, etc.); carpooling; riding bikes; public transportation; private transportation providers; and childcare providers.

How are school bus stops established?
Routes are established to serve all students in an area in a safe and reasonable manner. Every effort is made to establish school bus stops near where students live and we try to keep stops consistent for the morning and afternoon routes. At the middle and high school level, the number of stops on a route typically decreases and students may be expected to walk farther to a stop. Stop locations and distances also may vary depending upon the number of students in the area and the type of area (urban / rural) being served.

How do I request that a school bus stop be added or changed or to report a safety concern?

Please submit your request using the Request for New Bus Stop link. Each request is evaluated before the decision is made to add or change a stop. Once a stop change is approved, it may take up to two weeks to have it implemented because other riders need to be notified of the change and buses may need to be rerouted. 


There is no room for my child at the designated school in our area so my child has been assigned to another school. Will you provide transportation to and from the school to which he/she has been assigned?

Yes, the school secretary will notify the transportation office when this situation occurs; you can expect to be notified of the new transportation arrangements within three to five working days.

I have a student in the Seth Woodard Elementary SPICE program but we live in another elementary attendance area in the district. Will you provide transportation to and from school?
Your student will ride the bus for your neighborhood elementary school. Transfer buses run between the elementary schools and Seth Woodard each morning and afternoon.
I have a student that attends City School. Will you provide transportation to and from school?
Yes. City School is a “choice” middle school; we provide transportation to and from school for West Valley students.  Your student will ride the bus assigned to your area for Centennial Middle School. Transfer buses run between Centennial Middle School and City School each morning and afternoon.

Is transportation to and from school provided to students in alternative high school programs?   

West Valley has two alternative high school programs:

  • Dishman Hills High School (DHHS):  No bus transportation is provided
  • Spokane Valley High School (SVHS):
      • AM Transportation: Students may ride their neighborhood West Valley High School bus. Transfer buses are provided between WVHS and SVHS each morning.
      • PM Transportation: Students will load bus at SVHS and transfer to Centennial Middle School. Their PM bus stop can be found at, Transportation page, by clicking on “Find My Bus Stop” and choosing the Centennial stop.

What is an undeliverable student?

An undeliverable student is a West Valley Early Learning Center, Kindergarten or Special Education student not met at the bus stop by a designated party. This can also be a student who tells the driver he/she feels unsafe to get off the bus.


What happens to undeliverable students?

If an authorized person is not present to meet the student at the bus stop or if a student feels unsafe, the procedure is as follows,

The bus driver will notify the Transportation office of the student’s name and bus stop location. Office staff will then attempt to make contact with a parent/guardian. After one (1) unsuccessful attempt, the driver will continue on their route with the student onboard. If staff has not made contact with a parent/guardian by completion of the route, the child will be brought to the Transportation office located at 7205 E Mission Ave, adjacent to Seth Woodard Elementary. If a parent/guardian has not yet communicated with office staff to make arrangements to pick up the student by 4:30PM, an emergency contact, local law enforcement and/or Child Protective Services will be notified to ensure that the child makes it home safely.

Can a student be suspended from bus service for not following the driver’s directions?

Students may be suspended from bus service depending on their level of progressive discipline or if their actions violate their safety or the safety of the other students on board.  

When do I have to stop for a bus that has its red lights flashing?   

You must stop for a bus that has its red lights flashing when:

  • You are on a two-lane roadway (one lane in each direction)
  • You are on a multiple lane roadway (three or more lanes) and you are traveling in the same direction as the bus