Last month we had a very scary, very close call with the bus. Our afternoon bus stop is on the far side of a busy street, and necessitates us crossing said street to get home. While the bus has it's lights flashing and stop sign open, cars regularly run straight through it. Whether it's the slight hill before the stop, or distracted drivers, or drivers simply feeling they are in too much of a hurry if there aren't kids directly in the middle of the street, we constantly have our eyes peeled for danger. Two years ago we had a close call, after which I stopped having the kids take the bus while I went through the "bus stop" appeal process. The stop was changed for a month, and then reset in September back across the street. I've been fighting it ever since, but the review kept coming back that there was "no problem with the stop."
So last month a car came speeding right through and was only two or three feet from where Benjamin was crossing. We were all right behind him. Enough was enough. I pulled them again from the bus and this time was not going to take "no" for an answer.
I got the run around at every corner. The bus company said they need a report for the bus driver. The bus driver said her supervisor told her not to open her mouth about it. The school said they don't control the busses. The bus company said that a "50km/h, two lane road that dead ends in 500 feet shouldn't be a problem stop." Oh, and they said that they can't control drivers.
Well, they can control where the stop is. I sent a letter to the school saying that as of June 2nd my children would no longer be attending school, as it is too dangerous for them to get to and from school. The principal jumped on the phone and said she would talk with the board and the bus company.
Two weeks passed, and this morning, June 2nd, arrived. I sent a short email stating that the kids would not be at school. But I was feeling pinched because James and I leave on vacation this week, and my mother, who will be watching the kids, needs them to go to school and take the bus. If I was going to be here I was going to keep them out of school as long as it took. As it is, I only had three days.
As it turns out, we only needed 30 minutes. By 9:30 this morning I had an email and a message from our school that the bus would now drop the kids off on our street, well away from the major artery. (Bonus, it's actually right in front of our house!) I can't express how relieved I am. We will have kids at this school for the next 13 years, and as long as we live here they will be taking the bus. I just hope I don't have to fight this again come September, or that I didn't have to go to the media about it. But let me tell you, I will!