Metro exploring options to best support students during school closures

Metro is exploring options on how best to support students during school district closures due to COVID-19, including ways to ensure students can access family resource centers being proposed by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

Metro staff will present its findings to the Metro Board of Directors for consideration.

We are committed to serving the community’s transportation needs, including during emergencies and important events such as elections, when we have offered free rides throughout the system. Metro will continue this commitment to serve Los Angeles County as the COVID-19 situation persists.

Metro is dedicated to ensuring a safe and healthy transit experience and is closely coordinating with the L.A. County Department of Public Health and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to ensure an appropriate response to COVID-19. Metro has formed an internal task force to guide its response to COVID-19, drawing on past experiences with public health situations such as influenza, SARS and H1N1.

Metro has strengthened sanitation operations at Los Angeles Union Station and other transit hubs, with an increased focus on cleaning and sanitizing high touchpoint areas such as handrails, restrooms, tables and chairs, railings and ticket vending machines. Buses and trains are cleaned on a daily basis. Metro continues to review its cleaning protocols to ensure they’re adequate as the situation evolves.

Metro would like to reiterate that the best way to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 is to follow best hygiene practices, to sneeze or cough into a tissue or your arm and wash hands frequently with soap and warm water.

3 replies

  1. After years of moving towards the near total elimination of school buses in the County, United Teacher Los Angeles (UTLA) is once again advocating for free Metro bus and rail transportation for Los Angeles area students. This shifts the burden of bus transportation away from the school budget (remember school buses?) and over to the Metro budget. It frees up funds to give teachers and other school employees more pay and benefits at the expense of adults who must rely on the County’s inadequate bus-and-rail system. At a time when teachers and many school workers are getting what amounts to a paid vacation at the expense of the taxpayer, this seems way out of place.

    Health experts are telling us that the most vulnerable people in this crisis are not children, but rather elderly adults, the immune-compromised, etc. These are people who rely daily on public transportation–Metro should be thinking of them. While school-aged children are often the carriers of this deadly virus, they are rarely the fatalities and often show few or no serious symptoms. As anyone with experience working in schools must know, their overall habits of sanitation make them more likely than others to spread most any disease.

    Students already receive reduced fare from Metro. On top of that, those from low-income families get a substantial LIFE Program discount. If they need transportation to LAUSD centers during the school closure, the District should provide (or charter) school buses for them.

    Health experts are saying kids should stay home. This is a time for them to do what experts usually advise against–watch TV shows and movies, play video and other indoor games, and under the guidance of their parents READ BOOKS. They should get exercise running or walking or through non-group sports like tennis in a local park. They should not be encouraged to ride public transit and put more vulnerable passengers at risk.

    Metro’s concern for the public comes across as insincere. Where was Metro for the thousands and thousands of workers who were seeking employment during the Great Recession and post-recession years? Where are they for the tens of thousands of homeless people on the streets today? Where are they for low-income senior citizens? None of these individuals get unlimited free transportation, as UTLA advocates for students.

    It’s time for parents to look after their own kids, like they do every summer vacation: drive them where they absolutely need to go; buy them their discounted bus passes; get them bikes and skateboards; or encourage them to walk. And whenever possible, make them stay in a safe home until the crisis is over.

    • Hi,

      We don’t have that info at this time, but we’ll update as soon as we know more.

      Thank you,

      Anna Chen
      Writer, The Source