Hi Readers! I’m about to write a column on how kids are getting to school — with a plea for more walking or biking, when possible — and for this I need stories of kids get to school in your neighborhood. For instance, I heard from my friend that her nieces are driven by GOLF CART two blocks to the bus stop in their GATED COMMUNITY. This seemed a bit, shall we say, ridiculous. The kids are able-bodied! The community is gated! The distance is two blocks! But the mom thinks the walk is just “too risky.”
I also heard of a school in Florida where dismissal works like this: The cars line up, single file, outside the school where there are NO children outside. As a car reaches the front of the line, a school aide reads the name on the dashboard plaque issued by the school and barks into her walkie talkie, “Jeremy’s mom is here!” At which point someone inside the school shouts, “Jeremy! Your mom is here!” And Jeremy is ESCORTED OUT to the waiting car — like an unpopular dictator being hustled into his limo. Jeremy’s mom careens off and the process begins again, with the next car and kid. Dismissal takes half an hour.
And, finally, if this is happening in your neighborhood, I would love to hear about it: Is it hearsay or the truth that in some school districts, the bus no longer stops at bus stops but now actually stops at each child’s home? And that some parents drive the child from the garage down to the sidewalk in front of their house to wait?
Please tell me what strange new things are happening in your neighborhood, vis a vis getting to school, including whether kids are even ALLOWED by the school to bike or walk. Thanks!