Angry parents demand answers about school busing from East Ramapo School Board
It's been a difficult start to the year for some Hudson Valley schools districts due to a lack of busing.
An East Ramapo Central School District Board of Education meeting Monday evening erupted into chaos over a lack of buses for students.
Hundreds of angry parents came out demanding answers about why there aren't enough buses for their children to get to school.
The Board of Education limited 45 people in the meeting at one time because of COVID-19, leaving most on the outside looking in and very frustrated.
East Ramapo is short 27 bus drivers that’s impacting 10% of public school students and 3% of private school students, in part due to a nationwide bus driver shortage affecting schools across the nation.
It takes roughly six to eight weeks to get a new driver trained and behind the wheel. The superintendent says they’re looking into ways to expedite the process, but there is still no clear solution on how they’ll fill the gap.
Frustrated parents say some kids are not making it to school because of the shortage while other kids are standing at bus stops for too long.
"All these students are not going to school yet because how are they going to go?" asks Luis Nivelo, of Spring Valley. "There are still thousands of children who are being impacted by the buses showing up a half-hour late, an hour late," says Regina Mendoza.
"I ask that you continue to be patient as my team and I work to rectify this problem," said the East Ramapo Central School District Superintendent of Schools Dr. Clarence Ellis.
The district did not give a timeline on how quickly they could get busing for everyone, but say in the meantime they're working with as many families as possible to find alternative ways to get kids to school -- a response many parents are unhappy with.