At the start of the school year, I was very hesitant about putting my little baby on a school bus. But after listening to my friends and thinking about how many children ride the bus everyday, I decided to be brave and let my little one stretch her wings. From day one, our bus driver was very impersonal and angry looking. No matter how many times us mom's pleasantly said hi or thank you to her, she would just continue to frown and not speak to us. I, however, still let my daughter ride, because bad attitude doesn't equal dangerous driving. Then as the days moved on, we noticed her driving getting faster and faster. I kept telling myself that it was all a matter of perspective. I wasn't on the bus, so it just looked like it was going faster. So, I continued to let my baby ride the bus.
Then last week, the kids at my daughter's stop got off the bus with frowns on their faces and tears in their eyes. We immediately asked what was wrong, loud enough for the driver to hear, but she just closed the door and sped off. Our kids told us that the 5th grade boys in the back of the bus were goofing off. So to solve the problem, the bus driver threatened them. If they didn't sit down and behave, she would speed up and the slam on her brakes so that they would fall. Well, they didn't listen and she followed through with her threat. As a result, all the kids on the bus went flying forward into the seat in front of them. One of the first graders at our bus stop even had a large red welt under his eye from where his face his the seat. Many of the kids complained that they were hurt and the driver told them not to worry about it, their moms could get them an ice pack at home.
Of course, all the parents were furious, and called or emailed the school immediately. When the driver was confronted about the issue, she openly admitted to it. And would you care to guess what they did after that? They let her continue her bus route. Really?!?! Does my child's safety mean nothing??? After we learned the school could do nothing about it, many have written letters or called the director of transportation. They're response is always the same. It is under investigation. When asked, what are they investigating, they say they can't talk about it. And to make matters worse, this lady has done the same thing in the past and has also been in an accident with a bus full of children. So in the mean time, everyone has pulled their kids off the bus. I can't really put into words how I feel about this situation, but I am very disappointed in the school system. If a teacher was even suspected of endangering a child, they would be suspended immediately. Why aren't the same standards applied to bus drivers? What are your thought about bus safety? Grab a latte, put up your feet, and join the discussion!