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IE school buses cutback due to budget

September 4, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Many parents in San Jacinto are upset over the recent cutbacks of school buses in their district.The busing program at the San Jacinto School District has been cut back and fewer students are being bused.

This year parents are responsible for getting their kids to school and picking them up.

"Previously, the board policy had been two miles, but with the change we increased it to three miles. It was a reduction in routes, drivers and has resulted in an estimated savings of about $300,000," said Scott Shira, assistant superintendent.

Vivian Buyck is a parent of one of the 9,000 students in this district.

"Either we can take them if we are at home, but most parents have to work. Or he can walk around to the major street where there is a sidewalk and walk across to White Oak," said Buyck.

Ms. Buyck's son is 12-years-old. She says that it is not the walk to the bus stop that is the issue. Instead it is the route that is not safe.

"I do not think that they should put a dollar amount on our children's lives. They should put those buses back," said Buyck.

Other parents like Kathleen Whetzell have to sacrifice because of the cutbacks.

"I feel upset about it because I have to take time out of work to come and get my daughter. We live outside the five mile range but yet we still have to come and get her. She is 13-years-old in the 8th Grade and I don't want to have her walk home because there are a lot of bad things that go on around the area," said Whetzell.

School has been open for just a week and the majority of parents are apparently accepting the changes. Most likely they will have to be dealt with for some time.

"We are doing multiple things and if there are additional funds that come from Sacramento we will have to prioritize. We want to keep the cuts as far away from the classroom as we can," said Shira.

The new rules apply to middle school and high school students only. Elementary and special need students will continued to be bused.

 

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