HopSkipDrive keeps SIATech South Bay Charter School students on track
Written by Karen Sampson
SIATech South Bay — part of a network of public charter high schools with campuses in California — aims to educate at-promise students through high-quality, personalized high school diploma options that prepare them for success in college, career and life.
Located in Chula Vista, SIA Tech South Bay re-engages 16- to 24-year-old students who have dropped out of school, and provides an independent study pathway to earn a high school diploma with a curriculum that integrates technology and academics.
We spoke to SIATech Instructional Technical Aide, Christine Vergara (pictured left), who shared her thoughts on how HopSkipDrive’s easy-to-use platform, top-notch customer service and convenient parent/caregiver app have helped SIATech students stay in school and on track with their personal and academic goals.
Before partnering with HopSkipDrive, public transportation was the only option for SIATech South Bay students. Looking to re-engage its students post-pandemic, the school believed that working with HopSkipDrive would be a great way to do so.
What was the issue were you looking to solve with HopSkipDrive?
Before HopSkipDrive, we only offered public transportation for our students. We had a few students who were hesitant to return to school post-pandemic, so we were hoping using HopSkipDrive would help ease their nerves about transportation to get to school.
Why did you choose HopSkipDrive?
We were offered the option to do a pilot for our school, and we knew it would be a great opportunity.
What has the experience with HopSkipDrive been like for the school?
We’ve had a great overall experience with HopSkipDrive!
Customer support is always kind, patient, understanding and thorough. They are quick to problem-solve any issue, and they do it with a smile on their face — you can’t see them but they have a positive attitude. In any situation, they’ve kept us feeling safe by assuring us they will make the best choice to make everyone feel comfortable.
HopSkipDrive is an accessible form of transportation for students near and far. It has saved travel time for our students — not only those who live further away but also those who have family responsibilities such as caring for a family member and/or being a primary breadwinner.
HopSkipDrive also has a user-friendly interface. I am able to schedule rides for the entire school year, allowing our students to have a routine, and cancel rides directly from the app.
What has the HopSkipDrive experience been like for students and parents?
Friendships have been made with students who ride together. And we often see students holding conversations with the CareDrivers as well, and smiling as they are getting out of the car. Anxious feelings have been put at ease.
Our students have also been comfortable with sharing when they’ve had good and bad experiences, helping them to advocate for themselves. With the assistance of HopSkipDrive’s customer support in finding a resolution, students, too, have felt heard and supported.
It’s helpful that parents can track their student’s ride so they know when they should expect them home or when they arrive at school safely.
How does HopSkipDrive help your students?
HopSkipDrive has helped our students, including some who would otherwise be difficult to reach, overcome barriers. We have even noticed our quieter students feeling more comfortable around adults and expressing themselves in bigger group settings, which is something I don’t think would have happened without their experience with HopSkipDrive.
Transportation is no longer a factor for missing school, allowing us to engage with more students on a weekly basis.
We are grateful for the opportunity to work alongside HopSkipDrive to help our students achieve their personal and academic goals.
Interested in learning more about how charter, private and independent schools partner with HopSkipDrive to solve their unique transportation challenges?