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August 26, 2020

Philly parents can receive $150 per month to drive their kids to school

District offers financial incentive to reduce number of students riding buses during COVID-19 pandemic

Education Schools
parent flat rate program Austin Pacheco/

The School District of Philadelphia has extended the deadline for its Parent Flat Rate Program, which provides a monthly stipend to parents willing to drive their kids to school during the coronavirus pandemic.

The School District of Philadelphia has extended the deadline for a new program that will pay parents to take their child to school instead of relying on school transportation services when in-person classes resume. 

The new deadline for the Parent Flat Rate Program is now Friday. Parents who participate in the program will receive $150 for each month that their child opts out of assigned bus, cab or van transportation during the 2020-21 school year. 

The pilot program aims to reduce the number of students using school transportation during the coronavirus pandemic. 

The payments will begin once a child's school resumes in-person classes. Multiple children can be enrolled in the program, but households are limited to receiving $1,500 throughout the school year.

Though the district has moved all instruction online through mid-November, many Philadelphia students use district transportation to attend charter and private schools. About 150 area schools will be conducting some form of in-person instruction, district spokesperson Monica Lewis told 6ABC.

"We understand that many parents feel a little unsure about sending their children out or going out on their own in situations where they can't control the environment around them," Lewis said. 

Students will be required to attend at least 70% of their school's instructional days each month to receive the monthly stipend. 

Parents seeking to apply must fill out this online form. Once enrolled, they will be required to submit a W-9 tax form and monthly program forms to their school office. 

At the end of each month, a principal or school administrator will confirm the child's attendance, sign the monthly program form and submit it for processing. Parents should receive a check within 30 days. 

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