Another school year is set to begin and transportation chaos is already underway.
Every year we hope it will be different. The problem is, we do exactly nothing that makes it different.
We know it’s a problem.
It will be better.
We’ll figure it out this time.
But every year, it’s the same old thing.
Over and over and over again. And this year, it’s worse than ever before.
Parents — we hear you. But we want to hear FROM you.
Write into EduMom — firstname.lastname@example.org — and I will give your child a Lyft to school.
That’s right. Write into EduMom and tell me your story. Tell me how the BPS transportation mess directly impacts your family, we’ll pick a story and I will personally pay for your child to get to and from school in a Lyft for an entire week.
In a mess like this — parents need to stick together.
Let’s remember that BPS spends $120 million every year on busing. We have literally the most expensive bus drivers in the country. (More on that in a minute.)
The average large school district spends $350 per student on transportation. In Boston? We spend about $2,000 and still cant get them on time!
Now, as parents, we’re not asking anything for extraordinary, just a reliable transportation to get to the damn building.
And trust me folks —this is only the beginning.
The charter schools in Boston have already begun of course, (because in order to teach kids, you need to actually have them in the classroom.)
Boston Public Schools won’t even begin on September 6th for 1st – 12th grades — kindergarten not until SEPTEMBER 11 (which was another whole fiasco in and of itself — and has thrown many families into a scramble because of bizarre change, ineffective communication and the fact that they are forced to find a random short term child care option for WEEKS if you like, WORK FOR A LIVING TO SUPPORT YOUR FAMILY.)
Ahem. Back to transportation.
Added to this year’s transportation fiasco is the fact that the Boston Public Schools Director of Transportation just quit and the union bus drivers decided not to show up for work this week.
That’s right. Contract is up on Friday!
Want to see the current Boston Bus Drivers Union contract? It’s 158 PAGES LONG. The base wage? $25.11 per hour.
They’re not happy and they’re now threatening to shut the transportation company down completely.
Reading their list of demands and their Facebook posts, I’m not even sure what they’re after exactly …
Preventing the MIT algorithm that would cut down on the amount of time kids spend on buses because less time on buses means less time that drivers are driving?
The prison industrial complex?
I can’t really follow.
(Actual footage of EduMom trying to read the Boston Bus Drivers Union Facebook page and fliers.)
Oh, and did we mention we have an interim superintendent in Boston who has never done any of this/negotiated this kind of stuff before? (Here’s hoping they give you some kind of pamphlet with your interim superintendent license.)
So — what does this actually mean for children and families?
It means kids get screwed.
Parents call out of work or have to leave early.
Kids lose learning time and get left stranded in the heat.
Parents who are already struggling take a hit to their paychecks.
So in the name of parent solidarity, I’m putting my money where my mouth is.
Write into EduMom at email@example.com and I’ll give you a Lyft.
I mean, what the hell else are parents supposed to do here?