Pilot program GOAL Line offers bus loop for Detroit school students

- Community forces are teaming up to erase transportation barriers preventing students from getting to Detroit schools and staying in the district 

The solution is called Get On and Learn or GOAL Line It’s a pilot bus loop serving northwest Detroit that allows students who live in communities surrounding the bus loop access to 10 public or charter schools in their neighborhood.

"The fact is that 30,000 students are leaving Detroit schools for schools outside of Detroit and that's a challenge," said Nicholai Vitti, Superintendent Detroit Public Schools Community School District.  "This is about equity and access. If we have an opportunity to provide an easier route to school and an easier route back home from school, and an afterschool component, the question is why not." 

Students who use the program will be picked up in the morning at a participating school near their home. When school is out, they will be dropped off at school or they can go to the Northwest Activity Center for an after school program that goes until 6 p.m.

"It allows for me to have sense of peace that my son will be picked up and taken to somewhere he's safe," said parent Tamika Langford.

Organizers say another unique component is that student participants will receive a card that they swipe when they get on and off the bus so their parents can know their child has arrived at the school or Northwest Activity Center. 

"To give parents reassurance as to where their kids are going as far as being on the GOAL line," said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan.

School officials say if this pilot program works and people are on board with it, the program could help increase enrollment in DPSCD and charter schools.

"And if it does, then we look to scale this so we can bring more students back to the city," said Vitti.

For more information: https://www.goaldetroit.org/

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