Publication Date

Spring 2020

Degree Type

Master's Project

Degree Name

Master of Public Administration (MPA)


Urban and Regional Planning

First Advisor

Frances Edwards


Pupil Transportation, California School District Transportation Departments, Alternative Pupil-Transportation Models, School Bus Transportation, Pupil-Transportation Cost, Pupil-Transportation Safety, Pupil-Transportation Policy


The purpose of this study was to examine whether alternative pupil-transportation models are more cost efficient and safer for students than traditional school bus transportation in California. The study also focused on the fiscal and safety challenges that school districts face when transporting students. For the purpose of this analysis, “safer” will be defined in relation to the estimated injury or fatality costs resulting from a vehicle/school bus accident during pupil transportation.

The study analyzed the transportation departments of five California school districts (San Francisco Unified School District, Monterey Peninsula Unified School District, Salinas City Elementary School District, Chualar Union School District, and Monterey County Office of Education) to study the effects of using alternate types of transportation on various types of school districts (e.g., number of students transported, district size, and service area).