News & Events



Beginning in June 2014, the New York City Department of Education has adjusted the way they make decisions about promoting students in grades 3 through 8 to the next grade. The proposed changes will ensure that students’ scores on New York State English and Math tests are no longer a primary factor in promotion decisions. Instead, schools will base promotion decisions on a variety of measures of student progress, which may include report cards, samples of student writing, projects, assessments, assignments, and other student work alongside State tests.

If you are not satisfied with a promotion decision, you may submit a written appeal to your child’s school principal at the end of August. The appeal will be reviewed by the district superintendent, who makes the final decision.

Students with disabilities and English Language Learners who have different promotion criteria will not be impacted by this change in policy. The promotion policy for students in grades K-2 and high school will remain consistent with previous years.  If your child has an Individualized Education Plan or is an English Language Learner, talk to your child’s school about how this process applies.

For more information, please view “What to Expect with the New Promotion Policy” or visit this webpage:

If you have any questions, please contact your child’s school.



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RAISING THE BAR is a roadmap for student success in New York City public schools. It was written for parents, to describe the DoE plans for getting students ready for college and careers.


The Department is raising expectations for teaching and learning. We are creating new schools designed for student success and working hard to improve existing schools, and we ALL have a role to play in boosting student achievement.

College and careers is the goal, and working together is the way to get there.




The Office of Pupil Transportation (OPT) provides service to over 600,000 students attending both public and non-public schools located within the five boroughs, neighboring counties and New Jersey and Connecticut.

Transportation services include stop-to-school busing, door-to-door busing, student MetroCards for use on public transportation, and yellow bus service for over 160,000 school field trips every year.

Our goal is to give parents and families the information they need to be informed and involved. You can learn more about general education eligibility and student MetroCards, find important safety guidelines and valuable tips to share with your child.

PARENTS’ RESOURCES online contains helpful information about school bus transportation, OPT policies and procedures, bus eligibility and explains what happens if the school bus arrives at a student’s destination and there is no adult at the stop to receive the child – also how to request to change the location where a student is dropped off after school.

Frequently Asked Questions about school busing.

Transportation eligibility is determined by the Office of Pupil Transportation on the basis of the student’s grade level and the distance between the student’s residence and the school.  Residence/school distances are determined by OPT using the shortest walking route.  Please note: Driving distances are not used to calculate eligibility. 

You can view a chart containing distance eligibility information online.

Students eligible for half fare transportation will be issued a half-fare student MetroCard by the office in their school that distributes MetroCards.  The half-fare student MetroCard allows an eligible student to travel to and from school and school-related activities on buses only.

Students eligible for full fare transportation can be issued a full-fare student MetroCard by the office in their school that distributes MetroCards or they may apply for yellow bus service.  A full-fare student MetroCard allow an eligible student to travel to and from school and school-related activities by bus and train.

Students eligible for full-fare transportation may apply for yellow bus service. Yellow bus service is bus service provided from designated stops at designated times to and from schools receiving this service.

To apply for yellow bus service, a student must meet the following criteria:

  • The student must be eligible for full fare transportation as described above.

  • The student’s school must have yellow bus service.

  • The students must be in grades K-8.

  • The student’s residence must be in the same district as the school (if attending a public school) or the same borough (if attending a charter or non-public school).

  • The student’s bus route, as measured by bus stops, is no longer than five miles.

If the above criteria are met and the student applies for and is assigned yellow bus service, the student will be assigned to a bus stop by his or her school.

Please Note: Admission to a gifted and talented program or school does not guarantee a student yellow bus transportation. Eligibility for yellow bus transportation for general education students attending gifted and talented schools and programs is based on the same criteria that apply to public school general education students as indicated above.

To determine whether or not your child’s school has yellow bus service, contact the school. As an alternative, you may contact the Office of Pupil Transportation (OPT) directly by dialing 718-392-8855.

If your child’s school does not have yellow bus service, only your child’s school (not parents) may request that service be instituted.

If you find the bus stop to which your child is assigned is unsuitable, work with your school to select a different stop from those available to the school. OPT does not assign stops to students, only schools do.  If you find none of the stops available to your child’s school suitable, your child’s school may request that a new stop be created. Only schools may request the creation of new stops. New stops will be granted only if they can be created using existing guidelines.

Any exemptions to the DoE’s transportation policies must be applied for in writing. If an exception is granted, it will be documented by the issuance of a formal variance.

Variance Request Forms for Student Eligibility to School Busing:

OPT Customer Service Agents are available Monday-Friday from 6 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. at 718-392-8855 and via e-mail to to answer questions, take service complaints, and provide information for parents and schools. Staff is always available at OPT until bus companies report that all bus routes have been completed and children have arrived safely at home. OPT Customer Service Agents are also available on weekends during peak periods of the year to assist parents and schools with information concerning school opening in September and summer transportation in late June.


State education law mandates that the City provide transportation for special education children residing in New York City to and from the school they legally attend.  The type of transportation provided (yellow bus or MetroCard for public transportation) is determined by the student’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP) which is developed by the Committee on Special Education.  Unlike general education where eligibility is determined by a student’s grade level and the distance he or she lives from school, a special education student’s eligibility for transportation is determined solely by the requirements of their IEP.  Special education busing is a door-to-door service.

Chancellor’s Regulation A-801 defines the key responsibilities of everyone involved in the movement of special education school children. This includes the Office of Pupil Transportation (OPT), the Division of Special Education, the Committee on Special Education, the bus companies, drivers, escorts, schools, parents, and children.

You can find more information online here.