Mayor Emanuel and CTA Offer Students Free CTA Rides on the First Day of School

August 31, 2018 11:35 AM

Popular “First Day, Free Rides” program encourages student attendance; CTA will continue to offer low student fares of just 75 cents the rest of the year when school is in session

In an effort to encourage school attendance, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) President Dorval R. Carter, Jr., announced today that CTA will again this year provide all students and accompanying adults with free bus and train rides on the first day of Chicago Public Schools’ school year, Tuesday, September 4, 2018.

The “First Day, Free Rides” program, which was first launched by Mayor Emanuel in 2011, provided approximately 130,000 free rides to students and their parents or guardians last year.

“By providing Chicago area students with reliable, convenient transportation every day, we help ensure they arrive at school ready to learn and succeed,” said Mayor Emanuel. “We want to start the 2018 year off right by offering free transportation to students and their guardians on the first day of school. Hopefully, this reminds students and parents alike about the importance of school attendance.”

"The last thing students should worry about is how they will make it to school on time for the first day," said CPS CEO Dr. Janice K. Jackson. "CPS is proud to partner with Mayor Emanuel and the Chicago Transit Authority for helping Chicago's children kick off another successful school year."

Each year, CTA transports thousands of students every day to school and to extracurricular activities. Whether catching a bus to class, football practice or a debate tournament, students can be confident that CTA will take them where they need to go.

“We are always looking for ways to inspire and motivate students and hope this gesture will encourage Chicago area students to succeed,” said CTA President Carter. “We at CTA are proud to offer free public transit to students on the first day of school and look forward to supporting their academic success all year long.”

For the remainder of the school year, CTA will also continue to offer its low 75-cent fares for elementary and high school students Monday through Friday from 5:30 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. when school is in session.

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