Friday, January 30, 2015

Double Standards

Well, it has happened again.  I don't think I can let Elijah ride a school bus again.  At least not this year.  I just don't trust them anymore.

I'm not sure if I blogged about it or not but a few months ago, I went to meet the bus as it was dropping the kids off.  Only Elijah didn't get off the bus.  As any mother would, my heart sank and I began to panic.  Come to find out that his bus was overcrowded and so they asked only the kids that live in our neighborhood to get off of their USUAL bus and get on another.  Well, Elijah didn't hear that announcement.  He's on his normal bus so why would he need to get off?  Anyway, the bus driver immediately knew that I was missing my son so she radioed to the other bus and they brought him home.  It scared him as much as it did me.

Steven and I both called and emailed the transportation department for the school.  I was told an announcement was made on the bus....and that was all.  Even though they know exactly what kids ride which bus and they knew exactly what kids they wanted off and if those kids were at school that day, they didn't have a list that they checked and double checked to make sure each student they needed was off the bus.  And my son fell victim to their lack of preparation.  Even then, my problem was the fact that I have to show my ID and fill out all sorts of forms in order to change the way my son gets home from school.  But all they have to do is send some stranger on a bus to make an announcement and that's enough?

Well, now we've had an issue with the bus in the morning.  For the last 2-3 mornings, Elijah and I have been at the bus stop at the same time he's gotten on the bus for the last 3 or 4 years (same time as my older kids too.)  However, the bus hasn't come.  So I take him back home and drive him to school.  Once I saw his bus along the way and just thought it was running late that day.  Our neighbors weren't at the bus stop, but sometimes their plans change and they don't ride the bus so I thought nothing of it.  Well, this morning the bus didn't show up again and it was cold so Elijah didn't want to wait any longer.  I took him home and grabbed the older boys (we go to Starbucks on Friday morning before school) and headed out.  Lo and behold, we see our neighbors at the bus stop 15 minutes later than when we normally catch the bus.  (I had called her to see if she knew what was going on but didn't get an answer.  I had remembered that her husband said something about her having to get them to the bus stop instead of him so he could get to work on time.  But I didn't understand what he meant at the time.)  I stopped to ask her and she told me of a slip of paper that was supposedly handed out to the kids who ride the bus telling them of the change.  Well, I have never heard of or seen such a slip of paper.  And Elijah claims to not know anything about it.  She continues to say it was given out on Friday afternoon.  Well, Elijah doesn't ride the bus in the afternoon because of the first incident.  I then called the school to find out what was going on.  I was told that the bus drivers were in charge of informing parents/students of the change and that slips were supposed to be handed out on Friday afternoon as well as Monday morning.  Again, as far as I know, Elijah received nothing.

So here's my question.....why is it that I have to fill out all sorts of forms to change my son's transportation but all they have to do is hand out a slip of paper?  Also, I get reminder emails about everything that happens at the school.  Too many in some cases.  Why wasn't an email or some other communication done to make sure parents got the information?  I mean, they don't trust the kids to get on the right bus because they attach a tag to their backpacks that states what bus they ride.  They don't trust them with agendas, reading logs and report cards because I have to sign to ensure that they made it home and I've seen them.  So why wasn't more of an effort made to ensure that parents see something as important as a change in when the bus picks up their kids?

I am just beside myself.  I have sent another email to the transportation department telling them that they need to do a better job relaying information.  In the meantime, I no longer trust putting him on the bus.  I never know when they may just decide to change something and just not tell me.

More and more I wonder if public school is the right place for him.......

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