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Transportation Overview

Temporary Bus Route Changes (Green Cards)

Ms. Powers in the Hamilton Attendance Office is in charge of issuing Green Cards, which allow students to take an temporary, alternate school bus routes for a period of 1-10 days.  A request, with parent’s written permission, must be brought to the Attendance Office before school on the day it is to be used.

Activity Buses

Activity Buses are school buses that are operated by the School District to take students home from Hamilton after they have participated in an HIMS-sponsored athletic event or an after-school HOST class. Arrangements for Activity Buses are made during registration for HOST classes or athletics and are confirmed in writing by the Seattle School District Transportation Office.


Seattle Public Schools provides free transportation for students who live within their school attendance area but outside the school’s walk zone.

If a student is placed in a program, such as deaf and hard of hearing services, that is not available in your neighborhood (attendance) area school, transportation is usually provided. 

Transportation Eligibility Guidelines

  • Elementary and K-8 schools have a 1-mile walk boundary. Eligible students are provided service primarily on yellow school buses.
  • Middle schools have a 2-mile walk boundary. Service is either by yellow school bus or ORCA card for the Metro.
  • High schools have a 2-mile walk boundary. Service is provided with an ORCA card.

Use our school attendance and option school transportation area maps to see if your child is eligible for transportation. 

ORCA Cards for City Bus/Metro Service

High school and eligible middle school students at Seattle Public Schools receive a free, unlimited ORCA card valid through August 31, 2022. 

The ORCA cards provide no cost, unlimited transit on King County Metro, King County Water Taxi, Seattle Streetcar, Sound Transit, Community Transit, Pierce Transit, Kitsap Transit, Everett Transit, and Seattle Center Monorail. The ORCA cards may not be used on Washington State Ferries.

Learn more about Seattle’s ORCA Opportunity Youth Program.

Safe Routes to School

Biking and walking are great ways to get to school. Use the City of Seattle interactive map to find safe walking and biking routes to your school.

Delayed Bus

Bus routes are sometimes delayed due to traffic, weather, construction, or other situations.

If your bus is late, we recommend your student stay at the bus stop. Please create a plan and discuss with your student what to do if their bus is late.

View today’s bus routes that are reported as running at least 15 minutes late.