Manchester public high school students can now ride the bus for free

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MANCHESTER, NH – The Manchester Board of School Committee on Monday voted to allow any Manchester public high school student to ride a school bus to school, free of charge.

New Hampshire State Law does not require school districts to provide free transportation to high school students, and previously, students were charged $8.50 a week to ride a school bus to high school. Grade K-8 students are already provided school bus transportation free of charge.

This move follows an initiative announced in 2019 by Mayor Joyce Craig in partnership with Manchester Transit Authority to allow Manchester School District students to ride city buses for free.

“We continue to remove barriers to education for Manchester public school students. We saw a 15 percent increase in youth ridership on MTA buses after allowing them to ride for free, and with this move, we’re ensuring cost is not a factor in a student’s ability to attend high school,” said Mayor Joyce Craig.

“Not only is this move good for our kids, but the district could actually see a cost savings from eliminating the bus ticket requirement,” said MTA Director Mike Whitten, who manages the district’s school buses. “By streamlining pickup and no longer requiring drivers to punch bus tickets, we’re hoping to add additional stops to routes and reduce the total number of school buses on the roads.”

High school students may now ride Manchester Transit Authority and School District buses by showing their high school identification card. There is no fee for either service. This initiative takes effect immediately.