Author Archives: Snap360 Support

Bell Time Review

The Ottawa Student Transportation Authority is undergoing a transformation in order to meet the Ministry’s Efficiency and Effectiveness goals (see E&E Leading Practices Guideline). The key elements that lead to routing efficiency are as follows:

1. One set of walk zone maps using the same distance measurement for both school boards, and which include standardized walking hazards (see Transportation Eligibility Policy and Procedure).
2. Establishing school bell times that allow each bus to service up to 3 schools or 3 runs within geographical areas, whenever possible and regardless of school board.
3. Reducing the number of kilometers run by and paid to Operators.

OSTA recently presented a report to the OCDSB and OCSB Boards of Trustees outlining proposed bell time changes for schools across the system.

Public consultation will occur this winter and spring, and parents will have a number of opportunities to send along feedback before the final decision on bell times is made in December 2014. Implementation of new bell times would occur in the 2015-16 school year. Open houses and presentations will be held in April and May 2014. We encourage parents and staff to send their feedback to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..”>[email protected]. OSTA is prepared to look for alternate solutions and your detailed feedback can help us do that.

1. Please put the school name in the subject line
2. Include your name, and any other contact information
3. Include as many details as possible as to why OSTA cannot/should not change the bell time. For example, rather than saying ” I can’t make my bus”, include information like your bus number, the time it departs and how this impacts your ability to get to work.

Thank you in advance for your feedback. It is essential in balancing the need for efficient and effective transportation, with the other needs of each school community.

OSTA Collective Bargaining Process

A recent strike vote by OSTA’s unionized staff will not impact OSTA’s transportation services in the immediate future. It is “business as usual” while OSTA and the OSSTF bargaining units continue the bargaining process. OSTA will communicate with school staff and parents as the process unfolds.

Multiple Delays for First Student

handDue to heavy police presence on Merivale Rd, portions of Merivale Rd are currently closed to all traffic.  As such any school buses that have been parked at the Jamie yard, are going to be significantly slowed in departing from there.  The Police have advised First Student they will allow some school bus traffic in and out of the Jamie yard utilizing a back entrance.  First Student is in the process of attempting to contact
any drivers whom have parked in this yard to advise to allow additional time to get to their first school pick up this afternoon.

It is unknown at this time how delayed vehicles may be.

Thank you for your patience.

Walk, Bike or Roll Student Active Transportation Initiative

walking school busIn June 2013, the School Active Transportation Charter was adopted by the Ottawa Student Transportation Authority along with both the Ottawa-Carleton District and Ottawa Catholic School Boards to highlight the importance and various means of active transportation.

On Thursday, October 3, 2013, both school boards and OSTA participated in a signing ceremony for the School Active Transportation Charter, in conjunction with iWalk week, which was conducted behind Mary Honeywell E.S. and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton School. Thank you to the community for joining us in this occasion and helping to promote our initiative around your neighbourhood.

Read all about our initiative in the Ottawa Citizen article: Walk, Bike or Roll…
More information can be found under ‘Active Transportation’ on our main page.

Active and Safe GCC logo

PRESTO School Board Card for Eligible Students

The PRESTO School Board Card is paid for and provided by the Ottawa Student Transportation Authority (OSTA). OSTA determines who is eligible to receive the PRESTO School Board Card according to its eligibility policies and procedures.

For information on how to replace LOST, STOLEN or DAMAGED PRESTO cards, read more +