School Bus Contractors

First Student Expands in Canada With School Bus Operator Acquisition, New Contracts

Thomas McMahon
Posted on August 1, 2018
School bus contractor First Student has acquired Ontario-based CG Pearson Bus Lines.
School bus contractor First Student has acquired Ontario-based CG Pearson Bus Lines.

First Student is expanding its operations in Canada with the acquisition of CG Pearson Bus Lines and the addition of new contracts, the company announced on Wednesday.

First Student is the largest school bus contractor in North America. In School Bus Fleet's Top 40 Contractors list for 2018, the Cincinnati-based company ranked No. 1 with a fleet of 44,000 buses.

CG Pearson Bus Lines provides school and charter transportation services out of two locations in Windsor and Tilbury, Ontario. The company was founded in 1947 and grew to nearly 60 routes and 70 buses.

CG Pearson’s primary customers were Windsor-Essex School Transportation Services and Chatham-Kent Lambton Administrative School Services, both of which are current customers of First Student. In all, the consortiums provide transportation for six school boards.

Ryan Pearson, vice president of CG Pearson Bus Lines, said that his family has provided service in the Chatham-Kent and Windsor-Essex regions for three generations.

“We would like to personally thank the wonderful customers and staff who have become like our family,” Ryan Pearson said. “We are excited to know that First Student will help our extended family into the next chapter and wish the best to everyone.”

First Student President Dennis Maple welcomed CG Pearson employees to the First Student team, and he said that the acquisition builds on the company’s “positive growth trajectory.”

“We’re experiencing tremendous growth in Ontario, where we’ll add more than 400 buses to our fleet for the 2018-2019 school year,” Maple said.

Beyond the 70 buses from the CG Pearson acquisition, First Student's growth in Ontario includes an expanded relationship with Student Transportation Services of York Region and five new, smaller contracts in the province, a company spokesperson explained.

First Student now has close to 40 locations in Ontario. The company expects to transport some 200,000 students daily in the province during the 2018-19 school year.

The purchase of CG Pearson is the second in as many years for First Student. Last year, the company acquired Falcon Transportation, a 94-bus operation in Chicago.

Related Topics: Canada, First Student Inc.

Thomas McMahon Executive Editor
Comments ( 0 )
More Stories
School Bus Fleet ConneX (SBFX) will convene in Scottsdale, Ariz., from April 22 to 24, 2020. Shown here is a roundtable discussion at the inaugural edition of SBFX, which was held in Miami, Fla., in April 2019.

School Bus Fleet ConneX to Return in 2020

Next year’s event will bring school bus operators and suppliers to Scottsdale, Ariz., for roundtable discussions, one-on-one meetings, and other networking activities.

Dennis Maple, First Student’s president, is leaving the company for a position outside of the organization. Paul Osland, First Student’s chief operating officer, will serve as interim president.

Top Leadership Change at First Student

Dennis Maple, the school bus company's president, will leave the company in August. Paul Osland, First Student’s chief operating officer, will serve as interim president.

John Polli, president and CEO of Reliance Student Transportation, says the company values efficient employee training and driver recruitment.

School Bus Contractor Driven to Boost Safety, Training

From purchasing and operating one school bus company to later establishing another from the ground up, Reliance Student Transportation President and CEO John Polli has proven his dedication and commitment to the school bus industry.

Family-run Villani Bus Co. has grown by leaps and bounds over the last century, now transporting over 7,500 students every day. Shown here is Courtney Villani, president, with her son, Diodato.

New Jersey Bus Company Marks 100 Years

Run by three generations over the course of the last century, Villani Bus Co. now serves dozens of school districts and transports over 7,500 students every day.

Be the First to Know

Get the latest news and most popular articles from SBF delivered straight to your inbox. Stay on top of the school bus industry and don't miss a thing!