If you’re an Expat parent in Peru, you’ve no doubt heard about “movilidad escolar”. If not, it’s time to learn about this important aspect of your child’s education. The best translation of “movilidad escolar” would be student transportation, and that’s exactly what we’re going to talk about today. Unfortunately Covid has put quite a wrench in the works. While making plans to get your children to school now seems a waste of time, I assure you, getting familiar with how thing’s work can only improve your’s and your child’s quality of life here.
How Does Movilidad Escolar Work in Peru
Here in Peru, there are very few public school buses. Only a select few public schools offer this service. Usually they are military schools or schools for gifted students. Given that most public schools are close to home, buses are rarely needed anyway.
However, in all likelihood your kids are going to a private school. Depending on where you live, that school could be quite far. Most of the top private schools in Lima are located in Miraflores, San Borja, Surco, and La Molina.
Some private schools may include transportation in their monthly costs, although this is quite rare. There has been increased pressure from certain sectors to make this a mandatory requirement, though nothing has been confirmed. Aside from the few that include transportation, here are your other options for getting your kids to school.
Most schools will have a list of trusted transportation providers who can take your kids to school. These usually have a sign up period before the start of the year in February. Your school may have a sort of fair in summer where you can come and meet all the providers.
These carpools are vans that hold anywhere from 10 to 20 people, and craft their route according to where students live. They will pick your children up from your house and take them directly to the school.
The cost of this service is relatively affordable and should be paid monthly. Do not pay for the whole year up front.
Driving Your Kids to School
If you’re an Expat and you have your own car, naturally you can take care of the problem yourself. If the school isn’t too far, this could be a great option. Perhaps it’s on your way to work, in which case it makes perfect sense.
However, there is one big reason why you should NOT consider this option. Thousands of other people are doing the same thing. There’s a reason that traffic in Lima is far worse during school months.
If you do decide to drive your kids to school, see if they can find a friend who lives nearby to go with you. One less car on the road in the morning would do us all a lot of good.
Hiring a Driver
The biggest disadvantage of carpools is time. Depending on where you are in the route, your kids (and that means you too) will have to get up early, possibly an hour earlier than others. This could make your mornings more difficult.
You can regularly negotiate a great rate for daily taxi service to and from the school. Since the route is reliable for the driver, you can get a good deal. Of course, this is a more expensive option, but it’s also the easiest and safest choice.
You might want to try this if you’ve found a cabbie that you like. Maybe after a good ride you can get their number, and test them out some more. Or, you can opt for a VIP service that already has vetted their drivers through and through.
Movilidad Escolar is a big part of your children’s education in Peru. Make the right choice for them, and your family.