Parents, drivers bring bus concerns to Central Dauphin school board meeting

Harrisburg

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Over the years, issues with Central Dauphin School District buses have been no secret.

Board member Eric Epstein acknowledged at a meeting on Monday that the problems have been ongoing for years, but parents say this school year is an all-time low.

Parents have reported that their children have been picked up and dropped off late, not picked up at all, and even in one case, the bus didn’t come to a complete stop when a child was getting out.

“I’ve seen buses pass each other going to the same school, six buses on one street. I’ve seen buses not being on time. I’ve seen buses not pick anybody up,” said Linda Packard Walker, president of the Central Dauphin Bus Driver Association.

Parents’ patience are running thin, as well. Inez Laws said her daughter has not been picked up four times in the past three weeks.

“There’s too much going on in this world for my child to have to stand there for half an hour like that. I don’t need someone doing something to my child,” Laws said.

Walker said drivers have been used as the scapegoat and pressured into silence.

“They can’t come to the meetings and express their opinions, because I guarantee you in the next two days, they won’t have a job,” Walker said.

Walker said it’s a job made impossible by changed routes and driver shortage. She estimates that 50 percent of drivers had routes changed this year when it’s usually only 10 percent.

In a statement to abc27, Central Dauphin School District responded: “We are aware of recurring transportation issues with Durham School services and the inconvenience it has caused. We will continue to work every day to resolve the issues.”

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