City and state officials hold a press conference in Maverick Square this morning to highlight steps to ensure the safety of BPS middle-school students who will have to take the T to get to school this year instead of the traditional yellow buses.
Among the thing regular T riders will notice, according to Mayor Walsh's office:
The StopWatch Program will be present at designated locations on the MBTA to assist in making the transition successful all students. The StopWatch Program is made up of youth advocacy agencies including the Boston Center for Youth and Families, StreetSafe, Suffolk Juvenile Probation, City Year members, Clergy, MBTA and City of Boston Transportation officials as well as school officials and law enforcement officers.
More than 50 BPS staff wearing blue vests and additional City Year members in red jackets will be "safety ambassadors" at key MBTA hubs in September. These teams will assist students and help answer questions. Locations include Forest Hills, Fields Corner, JFK/UMass, Bunker Hill, Maverick, Tufts Medical, Sullivan Square stations and other major student transit hubs.
Also, BPS will run 70 yellow-bus shuttle routes between schools and several large MBTA stations: Forest Hills, Mattapan Square, Ruggles, Fields Corner, Ashmont, Maverick, Sullivan Square and Andrew. The goal is to reduce the burden on the T of all those new riders.
Some 2,100 eighth graders will be riding the T this year instead of school buses. Nearly 17,000 BPS students were already riding the T - including many seventh and eighth-graders at the city's three exam schools.