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Lansing high school students will get free CATA bus passes or gas gift cards this fall

Bradley Funkhouser.jpg
Scott Pohl
Bradley Funkhouser (at podium) is CEO of the Capital Area Transportation Authority (CATA). He spoke at a press conference at a bus stop in front of Lansing Sexton High School, along with Superintendent Ben Shuldiner (R) and others.

Lansing public high school students will each get a free Capital Area Transportation Authority bus card, or a gift card for gas, starting this fall.

Lansing School District officials think Friday’s announcement will solve a number of problems, including greater flexibility for after-school programs and jobs.

At a press conference at a bus stop in front of Sexton High School Friday, Superintendent Ben Shuldiner said Lansing high schools will start later this fall.

“Currently, our high schools start at 7:25, but the school buses actually drop them off at 7 o’clock,” he explained. “So, by starting school at 8 o’clock, we’re gaining an extra entire hour for our children.”

Shuldiner also says students who miss a pickup will now have another way to get to school on time.

The cost of the passes and gas cards can’t be determined until it’s known how many students take them.

CATA CEO Bradley Funkhouser said the safety of students on buses will be a priority.

“That’s an added responsibility that we have to take on, we will make sure that your children get home,” Funkhouser said.

Students will also get an additional bus pass for a family member at no cost.

The move means Dean Transportation will not be available for any students in grades nine through 12. Dean will continue service for K-through-8 students.

Scott Pohl is a general assignment news reporter and produces news features and interviews. He is also an alternate local host on NPR's "Morning Edition."
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