Bethesda, Takoma Park/NW DC, and Virginia Drop-In Bus Policy
We understand that families may wish to test out one of our morning bus routes or may occasionally need to ride into school with a friend. We are able to offer drop-in bus ridership for the Bethesda, Takoma Park/NW DC, and Virginia busses only. The Hopper Express and Hop2It busses are at capacity so we are not able to offer drop-in ridership for those busses.
If you choose to drop in for one of these morning bus routes, your first 3 rides will be charged at $15/ride. On your fourth ride, you will be billed the annual rate minus what you have paid to date. No prorations will be given based on time of year. Financial aid does not apply to drop-ins but does apply to the annual rate. There is no guarantee of space being available and regularly registered students will be boarded first. The bus driver will note the name of any unregistered students dropping into the bus and you will be billed accordingly.
Hopper Express and Hop2It Bus Service
In our continuing effort to be environmentally responsible and to make life a little easier for our families, GDS is pleased to offer transportation from the High School to the Lower Middle School in the mornings only and Hop2It bus service in the afternoons to the Bethesda Pool only.
The Hopper Express departs the High School at 7:30 a.m. sharp each morning when GDS is in session. The bus leaves from 42nd Street, outside the glass double doors at the High School. Please park in designated parking spots on the same side of 42nd Street as the bus to avoid traffic congestion and for the safety of children. Please note that the Hopper Express does not run on Field Day or days when the Lower Middle School is not in session.
The Hop2It afternoon bus services runs from the LMS Lower Lot to the lower parking lot at the Bethesda Pool (6300 Little Falls Road) on days when GDS is in session with a regular dismissal time (not on the Fridays when winter and spring break begin or on field day). The bus will depart the LMS at 3:40 p.m. (2:40 p.m. Wednesdays) and is estimated to arrive at the Bethesda Pool at 4:00 p.m. (3:00 p.m. Wednesdays) depending on traffic. Unfortunately, due to logistical difficulties, playdates not registered for the bus will not be permitted to ride.
GDS Bus Service Registration
Both bus services include year-long registration and are contingent upon a minimum number of participants. Both fees are flat fees regardless of the number of rides or date of registration. Financial aid is offered for the Hopper Express but not for Hop2It. There is no trial period for participation and you will be billed after your child’s first ride.
Families may register online through the GDS 360 Portal for the Hopper Express and Hop2It bus service, GDS’s morning and afternoon bus services between the high school and the LMS in the morning and the LMS and the Bethesda Pool in the afternoon.
Financial Aid and Staff Discounts for GDS Bus Service
The Financial Aid award for the Hopper Express is $100 for the year. There is no financial aid for Hop2It.
The faculty/staff rate for the Hopper Express is $100 for the year. There is no faculty discount for the Hop2It.
Delayed Openings and Inclement Weather
In case of a delayed opening, the Hopper Express will often still run on the same delay as the school, however, please check the website for details and specific times as this may vary depending on the reason for the delay.
Hop2It Late Pick-Ups
Parents or another authorized adult must be present to pick up the child from the Bethesda Pool. If a child has not been picked up by 4:10 p.m. (3:10 p.m. on Wednesdays) he/she will be brought back to the LMS, arriving at approximately 4:45 p.m. (3:45 p.m. on Wednesdays). Parents will be given a 15-minute window from the time the bus returns to GDS before their child(ren) are enrolled in GDS 360 as a drop-in.
For your child's safety, ONCE THE BUS PULLS AWAY FROM THE CURB, IT WILL NOT STOP TO PICK UP PASSENGERS. This is for the safety of your children.
The following are the rules and procedures related to riding the GDS busses. We appreciate you talking through these rules as a family and ensuring that you and your children understand and agree to follow them. This is both for safety reasons and to ensure that your child gets on the bus and that the bus departs on time. Students must behave in accordance to the School's community guidelines (including showing care, respect, and responsibility at all times). In addition:
All rules that apply to students on any other trip apply on the Hopper Express & Hop2It.
NO FOOD OR DRINK is allowed on the bus. The only exception is bottled water.
Remain seated, facing forward at all times.
Follow the instructions of the bus driver and/or the bus chaperone at all times.
Use "indoor voices."
Nothing goes out the bus windows—arms, legs, voices, trash, etc.
Follow the instructions of any adults involved in the Hopper Express
Play dates may not ride the bus unless the other student is also registered for the bus.
Should students be unable to follow the guidelines listed in this document, they will be given three warnings, with parents informed each time. Following the third warning, children may temporarily or permanently lose the privilege of riding the bus with no refunds given.
Hopper Express Specific Rules
Hop2It Specific Rules
Students riding the Hop2It bus:
Should report to the MultiPurpose Room (PK-5th grade) or the assigned Middle School classroom (6-8th grade) immediately after the bell rings. They will receive a snack and be checked in for the bus.
Must remain in the MultiPurpose Room or assigned Middle School classroom except to walk with the assigned teacher to the bus.
May do their homework or engage in seated games while waiting for the bus.
Hop2It parents should be aware of the following:
As part of carpool, students will wait approximately 20 minutes from the second bell dismissal before boarding the bus. The bus leaves promptly at 3:40 pm (cell phone time).
The Hop2It bus cannot wait for delayed MS athletics buses to return to campus.
- If you are running late, please call LMS Reception at 202-295-6200 with an estimated arrival time. The bus will wait at the Bethesda pool parking lot until 4:10 pm (3:10 pm on Wednesdays). Students not picked up by this time will be brought back to the LMS