Transportation Talk, District reconsiders ‘no pick-up’ zone

Tough economic times have forced the District to make tough decisions.  A new proposition to cut money from the District operating budget may affect students and how they get to school.

The proposition consists of expanding the distance from all Rockwood schools in which busses will no longer pick students up. 

Currently the no pick-up zone involves all students living a half mile away from school.  The new plans would expand this zone to 2.5 miles.

The state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education only requires that students be provided transportation outside a driving distance of 3.5 miles.

The no pick-up zone is based on the most direct driving route from school.  This means that some students who live within 2.5 miles of the school will still receive transportation from the District because the actual driving route is greater than 2.5 miles.

The planned expansion is expected to save the district $1.5 million as the District currently spends $40,000 on busses per day, according to the Rockwood website.

This change, however, is one suggestion on a long list of possible budget cuts for the District.  Many additional changes must first be made to reach the transportation issue which is number 14 on the list.

Not providing transportation for students at such a distance away is not welcomed by all.  The possible change has brought about much discussion and controversy in the community.

“I personally do not think the citizens of our district would allow bus service be cut to this degree and I feel most school administrators would agree,” Mr. Bill Sloan, Rockwood Director of Purchasing and Transportation, said.

These tough economic times have required decisions about cutting spending to be made by the District.  Students may be directly affected by these cuts in the form of no longer receiving transportation from the District.