Transportation Services

CDS offers bussing transportation for our preschool age children in the Half-Day Head Start program as well as some of the 7-Hour Head Start classrooms at our Maplewood location.

Currently, CDS has a fleet of 5 school buses that provide transportation for approximately 100 to 125 children each school year!


In order to ensure the safety of our children, please review the following Bus Rules. For any questions about our transportation services, please contact Phil VanTil, CDS Transportation Manager, at 616-786-0736 extension 2306 or

  1. Every person on the bus will wear a seat belt. In addition, all children will be placed in an appropriate child restraint seat.
  2. Every person on the bus is required to wear an approved face covering. (Mask)
  3. The parent or the sitter is responsible for and will take the child to and/or from the bus.
  4. Children are only dropped off to designated persons listed on the Child Information Card. Persons on the Child Information Card must be 12 years of age or older and must be seen by the Bus Driver or Bus Rider before a child is released.
  5. The Bus Driver and Bus Rider will check each child’s name on the bus route checklist as the child enters and exits the bus.
  6. If no parent or sitter is at home to receive the child, the bus driver will bring the child to the CDS center that the child attends.
  7. If a child is returned to their center because no one was at the drop off location, staff will keep the child at the center while attempting to contact someone to pick up the child. If, after one hour from the time of the bus stop, the child is still at the center, the police will be called.
  8. There will be no changes of address for either pick up or drop off unless it is to be permanent or of an emergency nature. Both must be approved by the Transportation Manager one week in advance.
  9. Bus Drivers are required to wait no longer than one (1) minute when picking up or dropping off children. Bus Drivers will not blow the horn.
  10. Bus Drivers and Bus Riders are not allowed to go to the door and knock.
  11. No eating or drinking is allowed on the bus when children are present.
  12. No smoking on the bus or school property at any time.
  13. Make sure all drawstrings, ties, straps, etc., on clothing, backpacks and other items, are shortened or removed to lessen the likelihood of them getting caught in bus doors, railings or aisles.
  14. Dangling key chains, large buckles, toys, and other objects hanging from backpacks are not allowed.
  15. The Transportation Manager/Bus Driver will notify the parents of the pick-up and drop-off times for their child. Ten (10) minutes earlier or later should be allowed due to delays and absences and bad weather.
  16. Parents are responsible for contacting a staff member if their child will not be attending school.
  17. If a child is absent three (3) consecutive days and the center has not been informed, the Bus Driver will not stop again until the parent contacts the center.
  18. If a child continually misbehaves on the bus, the Bus Driver/Bus Rider will report it to the child’s teacher. Parents are then given a warning regarding the child’s behavior. If the behavior continues, the child’s bus privileges may be suspended for 3 days.
  19. In the event that a designated adult is not present, or no one is present to receive the child, he/she will be brought back to the center and the parent will receive a warning note when the child is picked up. On the third incident, the note will state that the child/family is suspended from transportation services for three (3) consecutive Head Start days. The child may attend the program, but transportation will not be provided. Transportation services will resume after the suspension period at which time this process will repeat.
  20. The following rules will be explained to the child and should be reviewed at home by the parent:
    • We leave our seatbelts on until we get to our homes or school.
    • We leave our face covering (mask) on while on the bus.
    • We leave our food at home.
    • Toys stay at home.
    • We ride using inside voices.
    • We keep our hands to ourselves.