Posted on August 15, 2017 in News

The Little Rock School District and Rock Region METRO have partnered to offer LRSD high school students a fare-free universal transit pass for the 2017-2018 academic year. The program, which provides passholders with unlimited bus rides for one year, launches Friday.

“We’re excited to team with the Little Rock School District to offer this pass,” said Jarod Varner, Rock Region METRO executive director. “The pass lets public high school students, their families and our city’s commuters get more value out of our transit system by reducing traffic and parking congestion, reducing carbon emissions, improving our air quality, and eliminating the need for parents and other caregivers to make additional school drop-off and pick-up trips during peak commuting hours.”

The universal pass program debuts Friday, Aug. 18. The school district will supply students with related special identification. Passholders will then be able to show their specially marked IDs to Rock Region METRO bus drivers to use the system, free of charge, during all system operating hours and on all routes. Through the universal pass program, LRSD will pay one monthly flat fee to Rock Region METRO in exchange for the ability for all high school students to have unlimited use of the bus system.

“Transportation can be the difference in whether our students have access to educational enrichment, vocational training and jobs. We are happy to partner with Rock Region METRO to make that access even more attainable by removing the fee barrier for our students,” said Michael Poore, LRSD superintendent. “As we grow LRSD educational offerings, the ability to quickly connect students from school to school and from schools to internships and other employment opportunities is important to our success.”

The following METRO bus routes serve these LRSD high schools and educational training sites:

All Routes Except Routes 9 and 22: Aristotle, 401 W. Capitol Ave., Little Rock

Routes 17 and 22: Bale School, 6501 W. 32nd Ave., Little Rock

Routes 8 and 22: Hall High School, 6700 H St., Little Rock

Route 3: Little Rock Central High School, 1500 S. Park St., Little Rock

Routes 17, 22 and 23: McClellan High School, 9417 Geyer Springs Road, Little Rock

Route 23: Metropolitan Career Technical Center, 7701 Scott Hamilton Dr., Little Rock

Route 9: Parkview High School 2501 John Barrow Rd., Little Rock

Routes 16, 17, 22 and 14: UA – Little Rock, 2801 S. University, Little Rock

About Rock Region METRO
Rock Region METRO is the public transit system serving 3 million passengers per year in the cities of Little Rock, North Little Rock, Maumelle, Jacksonville and Sherwood and Pulaski County. It comprises the METRO Local fixed-route bus system, including 22 fixed routes and four express routes and covering 51,000 miles weekly; the METRO Links custom-route paratransit van system, covering 12,500 miles weekly; and the METRO Streetcar, a 3.4-mile streetcar system covering 1,080 miles weekly. Created in 1986 with an interlocal agreement among the partner jurisdictions, Rock Region METRO is governed by a 12-member board of directors who are appointed by its service cities and county.

About Little Rock School District
The Little Rock School District is the largest district in the state with nearly 25,000 students. LRSD has the distinction of being home to a national Blue Ribbon School of Excellence; more than 181 teachers with National Board Certification; Arkansas’s only K-8 STEM Academy; and historically, the most National Merit Semifinalists and Advanced Placement Scholars in the state. As the state’s largest provider of pre-K programs, LRSD gives students the start they need, equipping them with the foundational skills to do well throughout their K-12 school experience. By the time LRSD students reach high school, they have been exposed to a plethora of preparatory programs, including pre-AP, AP and classes with local universities that prepare them for college and beyond. Programs like AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination), encourage college readiness among all students, providing academic and social support. Thanks to enhanced partnerships with the business community, LRSD’s newest Excel program will allow high school students to align their interests with real-world career opportunities.