Frequently Asked Questions - EICS Transportation

What is the seating capacity on a school bus?

The maximum capacity of a standard school bus is 70-72 passengers. However, Student Transportation Services recognizes the safety concerns and problems associated with loading buses to maximum capacity. The general guidelines used are:

  • Grades K-6: 3 students to a seat
  • Grades 7-12: 2 students to a seat

 Using these guidelines, typical bus maximum capacities will be: 

  • Grades K-8: 60 students per standard bus
  • Grades K-12: 54 students per standard bus
  • Grades 9-12: 48 students per standard bus

 Standees or sitting on the floor will not be permitted under any circumstance.

What is an eligible student?

Alberta Education defines eligible students for transportation funding as those residing greater than 2.39 km from their designated school. This distance will be the shortest distance by public road or publicly owned access route (including park walkpaths and alleyways) between home and school and is measured from the corner of the residence property to the school property.

What is an ineligible student?

An ineligible student is one who lives less than 2.4 km away from his/her designated school. If an ineligible student wishes to access EICS’ transportation, he/she is automatically subject to a Payride fee.

 What is a designated school?

A designated school is the school in which a board has enrolled a student in accordance with section 45(2) of the School Act. The designated school is set according to the attendance boundary attached to the school. (maps available at

What is a School of Choice student?

A School of Choice student is defined as one who attends and EICS school other than his/her designated school.

Students who attend a language or language immersion program are not considered School of Choice students because, as per Alberta Education guidelines, the school providing the program automatically becomes the child’s designated school.


** Students wishing to access transportation to their School of Choice are automatically subject to a School of Choice in addition to a Payride fee if they are ineligible.

What is a courtesy seat?

A courtesy seat is for students that require transportation to two locations and require a seat on two separate buses. The seat is not occupied on a regular basis and is assigned as a courtesy seat, ensuring space is available for the rider. A Supplemental Fee is charged.

How does EICS determine the rates for student transportation fees?

Alberta Education provides transportation funding for all eligible students to receive free transportation to their designated school. EICS’ Student Transportation provides a service to students in the division by offering to occupy bus seats which are not required by eligible students.

Payride fees are based on reasonableness of costs to parents, not on actual costs or funding rates incurred as this would make the cost of Payride services prohibitive. EICS charges a fee to transport students who are ineligible, students attending a school of choice and non-resident students.

How do I pay my fees and when are they due?

Fees are due by June 30th each year, prior to the year for which you require transportation services. Payment can be made by accessing the student portal via Powerschool. Cheques are not an accepted method of payment.

Is a Payment Plan available?

Payment plans are available with all fees are due and payable in full by December 31st of the current school year. See “BUSING REQUESTS AND PAYMENTS” on the Transportation website.