The Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District Board of Education approved the LA Metro Fareless System Initiative (FSI) for student riders during its regular Nov. 18, 2021, meeting. The main goal of the program is to reduce the number of student and family vehicles driving to SMMUSD schools by promoting alternative modes of transportation like public transit.

The program provides free rides on Metro and Big Blue Bus to and from school and for trips after school and on weekends. The cost of the program is $3 per student through July of 2022 for free and unlimited rides, at nearly a $28,000 cost to the District.

“We are pleased to announce this partnership with LA Metro that aligns with our Sustainability Plan goal of expanding student commuting practices and increasing student use of public transit and other alternative modes such as walking and biking to school,” said Superintendent Dr. Ben Drati. “This program will also reduce local traffic congestion and vehicle pollution in our communities.”

TAP cards will be available for students at their schools starting the week of Dec. 13. Please watch for information from your school site. Students will be required to register the card to begin participating in this program. TAP cards must be presented for free rides.

Participating local transit agencies include LA Metro, Big Blue Bus, CulverCity Bus and LADOT Dash.

More information is available at https://lbt-preprod.la-metro-web.net/about/fsi/

Submitted by Gail Pinsker