MIDDLESEX CENTRE, ONT. -- With physical distancing requirements leaving fewer available seats on school buses, Southwestern Ontario Student Transportation Services (STS) is asking parents to register their kids.

STS CAO Maureen Cosyn Heath said in a statement, “Exactly what school will look like in September is still unknown. By implementing the bus registration system now, we can be more effective while planning to restart service.”

Starting Monday, email instructions will be sent to families of students who are registered for school and eligible for bus service.

Then after July 29, anyone who has not received an email but is school-registered and eligible for transportation can register at mybigyellowbus.ca.

The registration process will end on Aug. 14, and arrangements will be posted to the website’s Parent Portal later in the month.

Ministry of Education COVID-19 guidelines mean school bus system capacity will drop 60 per cent.

The registration process will also facilitate contact tracing in case of COVID-19 exposure.

This registration process doesn’t apply to those who use specialized transportation, which has already been completed for the upcoming school year.