High School students who live within the boundaries of the Seattle Public School District and who live more than 2.5 miles from their assigned school are eligible for transportation. Exceptions are allowed in the following areas:
- Students who require specialized transportation services as determined by their Individualized Education Program (I.E.P.).
- Students requiring medical transportation as approved by the District Health Services.
At the beginning of the school year, the district will send a permission slip to eligible students. This will need to be signed and turned in to The Center School office so that your student can get their ORCA card.
Pick up ORCA cards in the Attendance Office.
Seattle Public Schools provides free transportation for students who live within their school attendance area but outside the school’s walk zone.
If a student is placed in a program, such as deaf and hard of hearing services, that is not available in your neighborhood (attendance) area school, transportation is usually provided.
Transportation Eligibility Guidelines
- Elementary and K-8 schools have a 1-mile walk boundary. Eligible students are provided service primarily on yellow school buses.
- Middle schools have a 2-mile walk boundary. Service is either by yellow school bus or ORCA card for the Metro.
- High schools have a 2-mile walk boundary. Service is provided with an ORCA card.
Use our school attendance and option school transportation area maps to see if your child is eligible for transportation.
ORCA Cards for City Bus/Metro Service
High school and eligible middle school students at Seattle Public Schools receive a free, unlimited ORCA card valid through August 31, 2022.
The ORCA cards provide no cost, unlimited transit on King County Metro, King County Water Taxi, Seattle Streetcar, Sound Transit, Community Transit, Pierce Transit, Kitsap Transit, Everett Transit, and Seattle Center Monorail. The ORCA cards may not be used on Washington State Ferries.
Safe Routes to School
Biking and walking are great ways to get to school. Use the City of Seattle interactive map to find safe walking and biking routes to your school.
Bus routes are sometimes delayed due to traffic, weather, construction, or other situations.
If your bus is late, we recommend your student stay at the bus stop. Please create a plan and discuss with your student what to do if their bus is late.