JCPS Officials Have Questions About School Bus Ads

The Kentucky Senate could take action soon on a bill that would allow school districts to sell advertisements on the sides of school buses. But even if the bill becomes law, Jefferson County Public Schools officials may not be interested.

Lawmakers often cite Dallas, Texas as a success story for school bus ads. The school district there has brought in hundreds of thousands of dollars from ad sales, and lawmakers in Ohio, New Jersey and Utah are considering legalizing school bus ads as well.

But JCPS Director for Facilities and Transportation Mike Mulheirn says there’s more than sales revenue to think of. For instance, any advertisements would have to be durable enough to last through frequent washings and maintenance.

“If they started deteriorating, if they would start making our buses look bad…there are also issues of what will be advertised. There might have to be some policies and procedures set up to monitor that,” he says.

Mulheirn says he’s not opposed to ads, either, but he’s also concerned about their size. They would have to be fairly small, he says, to not cover up the reflectors currently on the sides of buses.