Gary parents upset after school bus service is cut
August 27, 2012 (GARY, Ind.) (WLS) -- Due to steep budget cuts and the rising cost of fuel, the Gary Community School Corporation was forced to streamline transportation services and reduce bus routes.
The schools have a new walk zone policy. Middle and high school students who live two miles from a school are in the walk zone. Elementary students who live one mile from a school are also in a walk zone.
"Stuff happens every day in these streets. You don't know what is going to happen," said Alicia Taylor, parent. "It's early in the morning. Then what about after school."
"It's too dangerous plus it's too far for the kids to walk through here," said Eddie Holmes, parent. "It's crazy."
School superintendent Cheryl Pruitt said in a statement, "walking to school is not a negative. We are working collaboratively with the city of Gary, our parent organizations and other community organizations to ensure safe walk zones."
Students who do not live in walk zone area are provided bus transportation and the corporation will continue to provide bus transportation to accommodate the needs of special education children.
"They said they are going to have transportation, but for now we haven't heard we haven't heard anything," said Lina Butler who has a special needs child.
All the parents that ABC7 talked to are concerned about the school's new walk zone. They say the streets aren't safe in Gary, that there are several homes that are boarded up, isolated areas that children would have to walk through and broken sidewalks.
Kishonna Kirk says bus services should have been solved weeks ago.
"I don't think it's right, especially for the young students, especially girls, to have to walk on a dangerous street," she told ABC7.
"You got abandoned buildings, you got people standing outside," said George Jenkins, parent. "So it's really dangerous. My daughter right now, she has to walk a quarter mile to get home."
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