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Los Angeles Unified Announces Transit Passes At Reduced Cost to Vocational and Adult Education Students (01-17-2023)

CONTACT: Shannon Haber  

Jan. 17, 2022

Los Angeles Unified Announces Transit Passes At Reduced Cost to Vocational and Adult Education Students

Los Angeles, CA (Jan. 17, 2023) – The Los Angeles Unified Board of Education unanimously approved a contract with the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (also known as L.A. Metro) to provide transit passes to vocational and adult school students district wide through the Fareless System Initiative pilot program. Set to eliminate barriers to student success, this effort offers support services for students who have been historically underserved.

Under the contract with L.A. Metro, the District will pay a reduced price of $7 per transit pass, an investment of $350,000, to provide the approximately 50,000 vocational and adult education students served by the Division of Adult and Career Education with access to obtain a free transit pass for use through June 30, 2023. The agreement with Metro has an estimated savings of $7,150,000.

Currently, all Los Angeles Unified TK-12 students have access to a “Go Pass” Tap Card that provides free transit on all L.A. Metro operated transportation and adjoining transportation authorities through June 30, 2023. Since October 2021, over 20 percent of all Los Angeles Unified students are participating.

“The expansion of the Fareless System Initiative is an enhancement to our current partnership with L.A. Metro and reaffirms our commitment to eliminating barriers for our students,” Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho said. “Today, our students have access to reliable transportation throughout Los Angeles and a pathway to outstanding attendance for in-class learning.”

“Metro thanks the Board of Education for their partnership on behalf of LAUSD’s vocational and adult education students,” Chief Executive Officer for the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) Stephanie Wiggins said. “By providing free transit passes to these students through the GoPass Pilot program, we are removing a key barrier to educational opportunity, and saving LAUSD millions of dollars in the process. This program is a win-win-win, for these students, the School District, and Metro.”

“The Fareless System transit passes benefit not only 50,000 vocational and adult school students, but the entire community who gains better skilled and equipped friends, neighbors, and family members,” Board President Jackie Goldberg said. “Supporting these students with access to transit will increase their class attendance, which is directly related to educational success.”

“I am honored to support the Fareless System Initiative pilot program, an investment which helps tens of thousands of students improve attendance and their academic performance,” Board Vice President Scott M. Schmerelson said. “By providing transit passes at a reduced cost, LAUSD plays an important role in removing barriers to student success and consequently, enhancing academic achievement.”

“I am excited about the expansion of our partnership with Metro to find ways to increase access to learning by eliminating the cost barrier for students in our Adult Education program,” Board Member Dr. George J. McKenna III said. “Based on the success of the high school program for free TAP cards for students, we expect to see this be equally beneficial in Adult Education.”

“LA Unified serves nearly 30,000 students through our adult education programs, and we are proud to expand access to this pilot beyond our K-12 student populations,” Board Member Nick Melvoin said. “I appreciate the support and collaboration of LA Metro to help our learners of all ages get where they’re going.”

“I am proud to support the expansion of the Fairless System Initiative Pilot Program beyond our K-12 students to now also include our vocational and adult school students, so that all learners can utilize public transportation as they enhance their education,” Board Member Tanya Ortiz Franklin said. “As we ensure students have access to and from school, we are also building leaders in taking care of our environment and our community through utilizing public transportation.

For the most up-to-date information, please follow Los Angeles Unified on Twitter @laschools and @lausdsup, Instagram at @laschools and @lausdsup and Facebook at @laschools and @AlbertoMCarvalho1.