To the editor:
How frustrating is the Lawrence school district’s decision to eliminate bus service for students who live less than 2.5 miles from their school?
While this decision, which touts a savings of over $400,000, may seem like a good idea to some, I strongly disagree.
My daughter attends Wakarusa Valley School, within the Lawrence district but located 5 miles from Lawrence on a busy county road. There are no sidewalks to or from this school, and the traffic driving past the school and along the route to our home travels at 55 miles per hour. To suggest that our children ride the T or organize a “walking school bus” is ludicrous. The T does not offer service in our area, and, even if it, did I would not be comfortable putting my child on public transportation, unsupervised.
Further, the walking school bus is a great idea, if there were sidewalks to walk on rather than hiking through 3-foot drainage ditches to reach our home. And frankly, if I was available to walk children to and from school, I wouldn’t have needed to pay for optional bus service in the first place!
We have always had to pay for this option and, while I don’t know if it would have remained affordable if these costs were increased, being given that option would have been better than nothing. Next time perhaps the district could consider ALL of its students before making such a drastic decision.