To Take Or Not To Take: Taking The Bus To School

Larissa Lieberson, Staff Writer

Taking the school bus in the morning should be illegal.

In the past I used to excitedly sprint down my driveway each morning to score the back seat of the bus. I felt so grown up, going to school without my parents sitting by my side.

But times have changed.

Now ten years later, most of my friends either have older siblings at Staples who have their licenses, or parents willing to be their chauffeur.

But that isn’t the case with my parents. My dad leaves for work before the crack of dawn, and my mom’s excuse is that “I’m not awake enough to drive you,” as she sits on the computer online shopping.

According to American School and University Magazine, 26 million students ride the school bus each day in the United States.

In other words, that’s millions of kids who have to wait outside either in the blistering cold, or scorching hot sun, just to get to school, just as I do.

Let me paint you a picture of my typical morning. It’s 6:15- over an hour before school starts and I already have to wake up. This is because I need to catch my bus that arrives between 6:50 and 7:05 am. Just to be safe, I leave early. Because let’s not forget the fact that the bus doesn’t drive down my street, so I must walk a quarter of a mile to the stop.

After minutes that feel nothing short of hours while I stand in the cold, shivering from the early morning breeze, the bus finally pulls up to the side of the road.

I walk onto the bus and take a seat. Unfortunately, it just so happens that my bus driver is also a DJ, and he thinks that he’s justified to play his mix tapes at 7:00 in the morning. I don’t care how good your music is; I just want to sleep.

And for some reason, even though I live five minutes away from school, my bus journey takes at least twenty minutes because of all the other kids we have to pick up.

I don’t understand why my bus ride should take four times longer than it takes to drive to Staples directly from my house.

Now don’t get me wrong. I realize that school buses are better for the environment and are a necessity for people whose parents can’t drive. However, there are ways that they could be improved to make them more tolerable.

Firstly, they should stop at each and every student’s houses. It’s unfair that I have to suffer due to my parent’s decision to live at the end of a dead end street.

Also, bus drivers should follow a strict schedule so that students don’t have to wait outside for fifteen minutes because of the scattered arrival times. A five minute range is acceptable.

And thirdly, buses should have a separate entrance into the school so that they don’t have to sit in the bumper-to-bumper traffic that stretches up to Cross Highway each morning. It’s enough having to endure picking up dozens of kids along the way.

If these changes could be made, there would definitely be a lot more smiling students in class first period.