Transportation has been a controversial subject in Jefferson County Public Schools. But what’s under-discussed is the importance of communication between the district and parents.
Around 6,000 JCPS elementary school students will be picked up from one location and dropped off at another, said Director of JCPS Transportation Rick Caple. The district allows parents this flexibility so their child can be transported to another guardian or an after-school program within the county, he said.
“We may pick up at mom’s in the morning, daycare in the afternoon, or just the opposite. Mom and dad are divorced we may pick up at mom’s in the morning and take to dad’s in the afternoon or we may take to mom’s on Monday and Wednesday and dad’s on Tuesday and Thursday,” said Caple.
This makes communication between schools, transportation and parents important, he said.
The first day of school wasn’t perfect, said Caple. Two kindergarten students were dropped off in the wrong location, which was corrected; and there was overcrowding on some buses, which will be corrected, he said. But it was an improvement from last year’s infamous first day, when some students in extreme cases didn’t get home until after 9 pm. And as the district and parents settle into the new school year, and communication improves, so will busing, said Caple.
“30,000 elementary kids will be under 30 minutes ride time. The goal is somewhere between 60 to 68 total (minutes) maximum arrive time,” he said.
The goal for JCPS is to have most elementary school students off the bus by 5 pm within the next two weeks, said Caple.