Friday, August 28, 2009

What's up with the Bus Stop?

Things have felt crazy around here. The kids are now safely back in school. Although I'm not quite sure how safe they are anymore. I think the Mecklenburg School Council is working without their brains, or at least without any common sense. Upon returning from school the first day, my children informed me that they had a new drop off bus stop as well as a new morning pick up stop. I knew about the morning change and didn't worry because we never make it to the bus stop, and I end up taking them to school anyway. I did not however know about the new drop off site. For the past 3 years, my children have been dropped off at the top of the road (which even though is out of my site, I did not worry about much because all of their homeschool friends are always out waiting for them. I figured it would be pretty hard for someone to steal all 11 children). But this year they are now dropped off three stop signs away!!

I began calling the school on day two to find out what the deal was. The county is trying to save money by cutting down on bus stops...for our elementary kids! There is currently a mile and some tenths between the stops closest to my house. Now, if you live somewhere in the middle, they are nice enough to give you the choice as to which stop your kids get off. What? Why do I pay tax money to put my children in danger? To get home they have to walk and cross streets that high school kids are currently driving home on. Have you watched how well some of them stop at stop signs?!?

Yes, I know what you are thinking. I tried to tell myself the same thing. My kids are old enough to stick together and walk home safely. But kids are kids. If they are mad at each other they run off, and sometimes they forget that you don't walk down the middle of the street with all your friends. So even though I know I need to let them grow up, I still wonder if I am being irresponsible as a parent. And...at what point am I just over reacting? Then we get this weeks breaking news about the woman found who was kidnapped from her bus stop 18 years ago. This girl's step father saw it happen and tried to chase the abductors down on a bike.

So, for days two and three, I drove up the the stop (because it is still really hot here) and waited for about 30 minutes both days for the bus to show up. In all it is taking them 45 minutes to get home from a school that is less than 2 miles away. Once again, my tax dollars at work? I don't have that much time to sit around, so this morning I signed them up for car pick up. It will save all of us time. I have filled out a request for a new bus stop and voiced my opinion in this matter. What are the poor kindergartners to do? Not every parent can be at the bus stop to wait for their children. I am still flabbergasted that someone thought cutting out bus stops was a good idea. Do they even have children?

6 comments:

Jennifer M said...

I'm so with you on this, Charity! We're in the same situation, and it's driving me crazy.

Laura D said...

if you have to go one mile to pick up your children from a 45 minute bus ride you might as well make all the kids walk the two miles home! That is ridiculous!

Alison B said...

seriously, rediculous!!! I think you made the right choice in going to get them. How annoying.

Lanna said...

Keep fighting the system! Petitions, phone calls, e-mails, letters, PTA comments, etc. Contact the police department and check the number of accidents along that corridor. Also see what you can find out about speeding tickets in the area. And, get the police on your side about the safety matters. It may not work (heaven knows my school board couldn't care less what the parents think or say), but at least you'll know you've done EVERYTHING in your power. Good luck!

Jenny said...

I am really surprised they let the cross the street. Our bus goes up and down the street on both sides because they are NOT allowed to cross the street because too many kids across the country have been hit crossing the streets. We also have a bus stop at every other street. Our neighborhood has three different elementary buses because there are so many kids riding them. Memphis City School started this year if you live with in 2 miles of the school if you want to ride the bus you have to pay. (their attempt to save money) Toby told me her schools are doing that as well this year. She is piking her kids up this year. Shelby County hasn't done that yet but I wonder if they will next year. I started letting the girls ride home this Monday and luckily the bus stop is my corner! Memphis and Shelby County are one of the highest taxed in the state of TN. You would think that our local governments could make cuts elsewhere when you are dealing with the safety of their children. Keep fighting it!!! They need to learn to spend tax payers money a little better!!

Kristen S said...

They have done the same thing here! Not quite to the extent of where you are, but my kids' bus stop has always been 1/2 a block down. This year they changed it to 1 1/2 blocks past our house. Seems stupid to me since the bus goes right past the old stop down to the new one!