Bus Route Changes Create Controversy

Big Controversy

School Superintendent Mike Ladner says it's one of the most controversial issues he has faced since taking office nearly two years ago. He says when school board members voted the new bus route policy in he knew a lot of parents would be unhappy.

"I asked the board to rescind the transportation policy of the June meeting, and they denied my request of rescinding that policy," Ladner said. "We have parents in this county, lots of parents, who are single parents lots of two parent working families I think we took very drastic measures in making the distances so long."

School Board President Cheryl Bennett confirmed that board members voted against dropping the new bus route policy, and told WLOX NEWS board members needed more time to look at the policy.

"We will meet with parents and transportation leaders later this month in a workshop to determine what's best," Bennett said.

"If the Board stays with it as it is, I will enforce the policy," Ladner said. "If they change it back, which is what I hope they'll do, we will continue to do it as we did last year."

Dividing Issue

Ladner says the controversial issue has pitted some school board members against him.

"I feel like the board has not supported me on the major issues. I feel like the board is trying to micro manage and second guess everything I try to do personally, as well as some of my staff. There should be a clear delineation of responsibilities. When I ask them to do this or not to do this they seem to have a different idea, and I'm out numbered each time."

What's Next?

A decision on a new transportation policy could come as soon as September 17th. The proposed school bus route policy will be discussed at a workshop from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the school district administration office on Highway 603 in the Kiln.

By Al Showers

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