OPB Bus Pass information…

School bus

Hello OPB Families!

After you’ve paid your final 2017-18 OPB balance and $10 Bus ID fee, your child’s bus pass will be delivered in a sealed envelope to your building’s lobby personnel/Front Desk – look for it the next week or so.

THIS BUS PASS MUST BE ATTACHED TO THE CHILD’S BACKPACK AND CLEARLY VISIBLE FOR THE DRIVER WHEN BOARDING THE BUS AT ALL TIMES.

If this is your first time using the OPB service and are not familiar with how to attach the bus loop to your child’s backpack:

YouTube video explaining how to use a loop tag.

You will notice some important information on the back of the bus pass:

bus pass back 2017 18

You or your child may need to reach the bus company or school for many reasons (some examples: Was something forgotten on the bus? Is the bus late and you’re wondering about its location or estimated time of arrival?) – it is the parent’s/child’s responsibility to call the numbers on back if there are issues like this. Remember, the OPB is a PRIVATE, volunteer run transportation service that is not a part of CPS or Ogden International … the parent volunteers just negotiate the bus contract, arrange payment and get this service off the ground at the beginning of every year. If there are personal issues like lost items or wondering where the bus is, please call the Ai Bus # on the back of the pass. This year, we’ve also included the different campus numbers and the blog address so that students can have easy access from their phones as well.

Look for your individualized bus passes very soon!

Final part of registration is here!

 

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Hello OPB families! We hope everyone has had a wonderful summer, and is now ready to complete the final stage of registration for the OPB 2017-2018 School year. Due to the challenges of declining ridership numbers in our neighborhood, the volunteers have had to come up with ways to make bus transportation both possible as well as affordable, and we are very happy to report that after negotiations with a few bus companies, we will be entering into a contract with AI again this year, and at a rate per family that was less than last year. Yay for savings and great news!

Here are some important things to consider:

If you submitted your application and deposit by the due date, yet are no longer interested in this bus service anymore, please let us know ASAP via e-mail so that we may accommodate children who are on the waiting list for this bus service. However, please remember that as per the terms of the original agreement signed by you, the $500 deposit is non-refundable.

For those families that submitted their applications and deposits by the due date, please check your email for the link and password for the full, detailed Bus contract with Ai. We need all parents to review that contact and then sign the Parent Transportation agreement:

Bus Contract 2017 2018 PART 2 to sign

Every year since the beginning of the OPB Service to our neighborhood, OPB Volunteers have signed the bus contract with our service provider on behalf of the all OPB families (or else each parent would have to appear in person and sign a separate contract with the bus company, per child, and imagine that logistical nightmare!) – this year is no exception, and volunteers have been able to secure this invaluable service and beneficial savings for those families that met the deadline in June.  But in order to finalize this last step in securing the bus contact, we need you to print out the Parent Contract above and submit it with your final payment.

Volunteers have received overwhelming support and gratitude for the way that the first part of registration transpired, giving parents the opportunity to turn in their forms and payment over a longer period (24/7 for many days, not limiting anyone from missing the deadline), instead of the long lines and wait in previous years. Due to popular demand, we are happy to report that the second part of registration will occur in the same easy fashion! The volunteers would like to thank Maya, who has so generously offered so much of her time (and use of her building’s front desk staff) to allow for this kind of easy access to facilitate this stress-free “no-lines, no-waiting, no-worry” registration processtaking on this huge responsibility and helping us to arrange this bus, with so many families and schedule needs, is a huge undertaking. We are grateful to Maya for all she has done to keep this OPB endeavor afloat.

Just remember that as long as you get your final payment and paperwork in by the deadline next week, you’re golden!

Here are the 4 important steps to follow:

  1. Payment for the remaining amount (disclosed in the emails to current OPB families) must be made only by Cashiers Check or Money OrderThe check or money order must be made  payable to AI Bus Services LLC.
  2. Click on this link https://ogdenpaybus.wordpress.com/2017/08/08/bus-contract-and-parent-agreement/ to review the bus contract. This information is password protected and you will need to use the password given to you in your email to access it.
  3. After reviewing the bus contract, we need your signature to confirm that you have reviewed the contract above and agree to have the volunteers sign the contract representing all of us. The parent agreement has been e-mailed to you or is attached in the link above or HERE, and must be signed and turned in with your payment.
  4. Please deliver your money order/cashiers check and the signed parent agreement to: 450 East Waterside Drive (The Chandler) , Attention: Maya Tatineni, Unit 908, by Friday August 18th, 5 P.M

Again, please check your emails. All details have been sent to the families that made the deadline back in June, but please remember that anyone who fails to get their paperwork in by the deadline of 5pm on Friday, August 18, will forfeit their deposit and spot, and your child’s spot will be given to someone on the waiting list. If for some reason you are out of town or can’t make this deadline, please contact OgdenPayBus@gmail.com right away.

The Ogden Pay Bus volunteers wish to thank you for your continued cooperation as we all prepare our children for entering into another exciting school year at Ogden International – there are great things ahead, and the sooner we tie up registration loose ends, the sooner we can start off this new school year in the best way possible.

Make sure to get your final payment, Parent Agreement and any other requests (check your email to see if anything has been overlooked or requested from you) ASAP, and once your final payment and paperwork is received, you’ll hear from OPB volunteers about bus passes for the kids, updated route times, etc.

Thank you!

The OPB Volunteers

 

2017-18 Registration and status of a second school bus…

Bus 2017 18 2

Happy summer OPB families!

We are very excited to finalize this year’s neighborhood transportation so that we can all begin this school year in a safe and efficient manner. We will be reaching out to you very soon with details about the final part of registration for the New Eastside’s Ogden Pay Bus for the 2017-18 school year. Details regarding final payment amount and instructions as to how to make that payment will be sent via email in the next week or so, just as soon as the parent volunteers can sew up loose ends and conclude final arrangements, to make this final process run as smoothly as possible.

To those families that were placed on the waiting list, there will NOT be a second bus. We’ve contacted the school administration, reached out to all of the management offices of buildings in our neighborhood, and did everything we could to drum up enough advertisement/interest for the 2017-18 school year, but the response was lower than we’d hoped and we simply do not have the numbers to contract for a second bus. For those families left in this predicament after missing the initial deadline, we wish that the outcome could be different, but we are at our limit of riders for one bus and no further exceptions will be made.

Considering the 9 years of valuable learning experience of many of the OPB parent volunteers, while witnessing the challenges arising due to having more than 2 children per seat, we are NOT willing to take any risks with overcrowding. Safe, comfortable and timely transportation to and from the two campuses are paramount, and we will not compromise on any of these principles.  This is non-negotiable, for the well-being of our children and the peace of mind of all OPB families.

The determination of maximum limit of students per school bus is based on our experiences in the past and situations of overcrowding we have witnessed in the past, including children and their bags crushed into a seat or children continually falling off into the aisle as the bus moves etc. Though the theoretical capacity stated on the bus seems quite large, in practice however it is very hard to comfortably fit more than two children to a seat, especially considering their larger book-filled backpacks, school projects and other personal items they must carry on any given day, as well as the need to accommodate children of different sizes, heights/leg-spans and ages comfortably. Ensuring a safe and comfortable ride for our children that takes these factors into account while organizing a group bus to fit various bell schedules, campuses and after-school activities has been a challenging task.

If you were too late to register for this year’s service, we are happy to refer you to the list of certified vendors (that we have worked with or called in the past to help us with the OPB routes) and other transportation options below. We hope this list is helpful with your own research. If you are trying to start your own group transportation, you might consider contracting a mini-bus through a certified CPS vendor below, depending on age/size of the children … we have found that children around the 4th/5th grade and up average over 5 feet tall and thus considered the size of an “adult,” especially with their back-packs, so you might want to keep that in mind when calculating bus size/seating, depending on the ages of the riders you need to accommodate):

 

Alltown Bus Services – (847) 674-0090

AM Bus Company – (773) 396-5556

Ammons Transportation  –   (773) 874-7777

BJ’s Transportation   –  (773) 238-4535

Sunrise Bus Services  –   (773) 378-1800

You can also check out the CPS Department of Transportation website for other questions about legal providers and guidelines for vendors.

OTHER PRIVATE RIDE SHARING OPTIONS:

Uber

Lyft

Checker Taxi

Chicago Carriage

Metro Yellow Cab

List of Limo Services

Pontarelli

 

Important update on the OPB for 2017-18

Bus is full

Hello OPB Families!

All of the parent volunteers wish to thank the families that submitted their applications and deposits in by the deadline of June 9th. Every year, there is a certain element of the “unknown” in terms of rider numbers, as many students move on to other schools, move out of the neighborhood, and new families move into the neighborhood over the summer.  At this point, due to a large drop in registration for the Ogden Pay Bus, WE NO LONGER HAVE THE RIDERSHIP TO SUSTAIN A SECOND BUS.

So here is the current situation:

1. Those families that turned in their registration and deposits by June 14th will have a spot on the single Bus that will operate between the two campus and our neighborhood. That service will also include the 5 pm after-school route between the two campuses and our neighborhood stops. THIS BUS IS NOW FILLED TO ITS CAPACITY.

This does mean a slight alteration to the afternoon dismissal pick up.  At dismissal, the bus will first go to collect the West Campus students (who have an earlier dismissal time in the afternoon), proceed to the East Campus to collect those students, and then return all the students, together, to our neighborhood stops. Based on previous experiences with a single bus service for our neighborhood, this may add an additional 10 to 15 minutes to the return trip. All other bus routes and times will remain the same as before.

2. This Bus is now at full capacity, and no new students can be added because of the bus safety regulations set forth by the bus company, CPS and the State of Illinois. No exceptions can be made.

3.  Families that did NOT turn in their registration and deposits by June 14th, but are still interested in using the OBP (Ogden Pay Bus) Service, have two options:

Option 1: You may email us at ogdenpaybus@gmail.com and be placed on a waiting list. In order to sustain a second bus and keep costs between $1300-$1500, WE MUST GET AT LEAST 20 MORE STUDENTS. IF we reach 20 new registrants by July 25th, we will attempt to re-negotiate the contract with the bus company to make arrangements for a second bus and will inform you by early August if this is an option.

Option 2: You can forgo the OPB waiting list altogether and we can refer you to other bus companies so that you can arrange your own transportation. Those recommendations will be listed on the blog, to help you in doing your own research. Please remember that all transportation options must be legally vetted CPS Transportation vendors. We will provide you with the names and numbers of these companies, to make your search for transportation easier. Taxi, Limousine, Uber and Lyft are also viable options as well, especially if you find parents in similar situations within the neighborhood and wish to ride-share.  Check the blog at https://ogdenpaybus.wordpress.com/bus-schedule-contact-numbers/  for those helpful resources. (Please scroll to the bottom of the blog to find information on transportation options)

All of the OPB Volunteers wish to thank everyone who submitted their applications and deposits. More information about final cost per rider, the final part of Registration and other information will be released the first week in August for the OBP families that have made their deposit payments already.

We wish you a safe and wonderful Summer Holiday!

The Ogden Pay Bus Volunteers

 

Refunds for all OPB Families!

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As the 2016-17 school year winds down, we need to take care of some important business – giving you a refund! After calculating final payments (new families moved into the neighborhood after our initial registration, bringing our collective cost per student down), we are happy to announce that disbursements will be available to pick up:

Monday, June 19
6:00-7:00 PM
Top floor of Village Market escalators

This year’s disbursement amount for each student is $75! This brings the final per student annual cost to approximately $1325, or $7.35 per school day (Students who joined after school began and paid a prorated total will receive a prorated amount back.)

If you are unable to attend the scheduled pick up time, please ask a trusted friend or family member to do so on your behalf. We want you to receive your money back in a timely manner!

Registration for the 2017-2018 OPB Service is here!

Registration

Dear New Eastside Ogden Families  –

We are looking to renew our contract with Ai Bus Service for the 2017-2018 school year to provide bus service from our neighborhood to Ogden East and West campuses.

Ai will provide the same service as last year (depending on # of children enrolling):

  1. A single bus in the morning to drop off West Campus students leaving the neighborhood  at 7:00 AM and returning to drop off East Campus students starting around 8:00 AM.
  2. A separate bus to pick up West Campus students after dismissal, and
  3. A separate bus that will pick up and drop off East Campus students. This bus will also provide a “late” pickup at West campus at 5:00 PM, which proceeds to East campus before heading back to the neighborhood one final time.

As you are aware, the cost per student for this bus service will be determined by dividing the total cost of the service by the number of students who are signed up to ride the bus. The cost per student can range anywhere from $1300 to $1500 per student. This is still the most economical, reliable and convenient means of transporting your children to school and back.

If you are planning to have your child/children ride this bus to school for the upcoming school year:

  1. Print and complete the application form:
    NEW 2017_18 OPB Application Form in PDF Format or NEW 2017_18 OPB Application Form in Doc Format.
  2. Print, read and sign a copy of the rules and regulations, which are pages 2 and 3 of the application form. Please note that a hard copy of the application MUST be turned in. Digital copies cannot be accepted. Parents who fill out this application DO NOT need to fill out the 5pm West Campus After School Activity Shuttle application, too. OPB Students automatically qualify to ride that 5pm shuttle bus.
  3. Submit all three pages of the application along with a non-refundable deposit of $500 PER STUDENT in the form of a cashier’s check or money order made payable to Ai Bus Services. No personal checks will be accepted.
  4. Please drop off completed application, $500 cashier check/Money Order and $10 CASH (please put in envelope and make sure it’s attached to documentation) with the doorman at 450 East Waterside Drive, addressed to to Maya Tatineni, Unit 908 by June 9th.

We need your commitment by June 9th at the latest in order to secure this service for next year. If you know of other families who are considering this service, please pass on this information.

Seats will be reserved on a first come first served basis. Having more families commit early will also help us to lower the total cost per student. Total cost per student will be determined after June 8th. A follow up date to pay the remainder of the fees will be set sometime in August before the start of school.

Thank you for your cooperation!