Carpool and Shuttle
Families living driving-distance away from Ecole Bilingue can conveniently drop off their child or children without having to park their car using dedicated carpool lanes at the Lower and Middle School campuses. For those living further away in Lamorinda area (Orinda, Lafayette and Walnut Creek), a shuttle is available.
At the beginning of the year, families receive a directory where they can find out who lives near them and self organize to drive the children to school. EB offers the possibility for families driving to school to conveniently drop off their child without having to leave their car using the carpool lane (Kindergarten to Grade 8 only).
Carpooling at the Lower School
The carpool lane at the Lower School begins on Heinz Ave and turns right onto 9th Street, following the traffic cones.
How do I use the carpool lane?
The carpool lane is in use in the morning between 8:00 and 8:30 am and in the afternoon from 3:10 to 3:30 pm. At drop off, a parent carpool volunteer will help your children exit the car and ensure that they reach the sidewalk and the front gate safely. For your child’s safety, Drivers should make sure they are fully in the carpool lane where parent volunteers are waiting before allowing children to exit the vehicle. In other words, do not drop off children lower down Heinz Ave where there are no volunteers to assist. Finally, please do not block crosswalks as pedestrians are crossing to get to the school as well.
My child is in Preschool, can I use the carpool lane?
Children in Toute Petite, Petite or Moyenne Sections must be escorted to and from their classrooms. Parents can park in the dedicated 20-minute parking zone on 9th street. Parents or guardians must sign in the preschoolers every morning and sign them out in the afternoon.
What if I don’t use the carpool lane?
If you arrive before 8:10 am or after 8:30 am, it is your responsibility to find parking and escort your children to the school entrance. As street parking is not permitted in specific areas adjacent to the school, we recommend reading street parking signs carefully to avoid being ticketed. Please do not double park or drop your children off in front of the school.
When does the front gate close?
The gate closes at 8:35 am. If you arrive after that time, please enter through the reception area and fill out a late slip. Note that Preschool students do not have to fill out late slips before 8:45 am, but they do need to go through the reception area. If you are inside the school grounds, please do not open the gate for arriving families as this hampers our ability to track attendance and could create security issues.
Can a driver pass, park or make a U-turn in the carpool lane?
The answer to all of these is no! No unattended cars are allowed in the carpool area and parents must not leave the driver’s seat while in that area. Additionally, it is forbidden to make U-turns in the middle of the street once drivers have exited the carpool lane as it is extremely dangerous! Drivers are asked not to pull out of the carpool lane to pass another car.
Where can I park?
Parents wishing to park when dropping off their children should use street parking (please respect the limited 20-minute parking zone on 9th Street). As a reminder: double parking is not allowed! Please also remember that the Berkeley Bowl graciously allows EB parents to use their parking lots until 8:45 am, so please respect that their parking is primarily reserved for the store’s customers.
How do I pick up my child in the afternoon using the carpool lane?
If you would like your child to be in carpool on a regular basis on certain days, please inform your child’s teacher and they will send them to carpool on those days. If you’d like to use carpool the day of, call the reception before 2:30 pm to let the school know that you will be driving to pick up your child using the carpool lane. Telephone (510) 549-3867 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and provide us with your child’s name, grade, and room number. When picking up, let a carpool volunteer standing on the sidewalk know the names of the students you are picking up and then pull all the way to the end of the line to wait for them to be brought to you.
Carpooling at the Middle School
Families driving to drop off or pick up their child at the Middle School can use the driveway accessible from 8th street, heading towards 7th street.
Parents are responsible for parking, escorting or retrieving their child from the front gate. As an alternative, parents may use the carpool under the following conditions:
- Drop off hours start at 8 am. Pick up is between 3:30 and 3:45 pm. A school employee helps retrieve the students in the school while families wait in their cars. After 3:45 pm, families need to park and enter the school to pick up their child.
- The carpool lane entrance is found on Eighth Street between Pardee and Grayson. It is a one-way driveway. In the interest of safety and as a courtesy to other drivers, drivers may only enter the driveway by making a right-hand turn. Driving northbound requires a left hand turn that blocks traffic and is dangerous.
- Always turn right on 7th street when exiting the carpool lane. Turning left is dangerous as 7th street has high levels of traffic and there isn’t a lot of visibility in that intersection. Drivers waiting to turn left also cause delay to the parents and students waiting behind them.
- Do not double park on Grayson Street or 8th Street when picking up or dropping off your child. This is dangerous and harms our relationship with our neighbors. Due to traffic congestion and safety concerns, children will not be picked up on Grayson Street.
- Please do not make U-turns in the middle of the street around the school as it is dangerous as well.
Thank you for helping us ensure a safe and efficient carpool system for our families!