James Madison University

About the Gus Bus

Rainbow BusLearning Happens at Every Stop

The Gus Bus brings free academic enrichment to children where they live throughout Harrisonburg, and the counties of Page and Shenandoah. We take our mobile-classroom vehicles to neighborhoods where families might have financial and/or transportation barriers to programs like ours – those that inspire creativity, promote social-emotional growth, and improve educational achievement.

The Gus Bus team helps children do better in school, inspires joy in learning, and cultivates racially and culturally inclusive education through the following programs:

  • Neighborhood Stops: We bring hands-on, literacy-based learning on our mobile-classroom vehicles to families where they live. Children can engage in fun, experiential activities, access high-quality children's literature through our mobile library, and learn from trained academic instructors.
  • After-School Enrichment: Our team plans and teaches lessons in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics), Health and Wellness, as well as provides homework help and tutoring onsite at local elementary schools.
  • In-Home Tutoring: We recruit and train JMU student volunteers and then pair each with an elementary-school student who needs extra help in academic subjects or with homework assignments. 
  • Dynamic Summer Camps: These feature our signature experiential learning approach and related educational field trips.