April 22, 2021

Metro Transit announced today “K-12 Rides Free,” a pilot program to offer free transit access for kindergarten through 12th-grade students in the Omaha region.

“Through this program, Metro will be working with schools and students to connect them to public transportation,” said Metro CEO, Lauren Cencic. “We are excited to expand our reach to students and provide them with convenient and reliable access to education, jobs, and other opportunities throughout the metro area.”

Free bus, MOBY, and ORBT rides will be available to all kindergarten through 12th-grade students in the Omaha metro and surrounding area during Metro’s regular service hours. The program will run from May 10, 2021 through June 1, 2022.

“K-12 Rides Free provides a great opportunity for us to continue to build strong community partnerships,” said Cencic. “Our mission is to connect people, places, and opportunities through quality transit services, and the schools in our community are critical anchors in that mission.”

The pilot program will provide greater access to the Metro system as the city’s education sector is poised to grow and the COVID-19 pandemic continues to change transportation needs around the region.

“As Omaha Public Schools expands options for students throughout our district and prepares to open two new high schools, we enthusiastically support the opportunity Metro Transit is offering young people across our community,” said OPS Superintendent, Dr. Cheryl Logan.

“This is an opportunity for us to showcase the bus as a safe, reliable transportation option, especially as the pandemic continues to change how our community functions,” added Cencic.

Metro operators are highly trained in safe driving techniques and helping riders navigate the Metro system. Cameras monitor all ORBT stations and Metro vehicles. Masks are required to board any Metro vehicle, which are cleaned daily and regularly disinfected.

High school students must show a valid school-issued ID when boarding. For those who do not have a school-issued ID, Metro will provide one. Identification will not be required for elementary and middle school students.

K-12 Rides Free is the result of a partnership with the Greater Omaha Chamber’s ConnectGO initiative and is being funded by a local philanthropic grant. Metro has additional pass programs with universities and businesses in the city.

Details about K-12 Rides Free, including information on using Metro services, can be found at ometro.com/k-12.