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Letter: School Children Need Sabin Point Bus Stop

This letter was submitted by Jennifer Campbell.

To the editor,

The bus stop at Shore Road and Bullocks Point that has served the Sabin Point neighborhood for years should be reinstated.

As of the start of this school year, children from Sabin Point must walk a mile beyond their old bus stop and away from their school, carrying heavy backpacks, walking on rough sidewalks. Why? Bus 13 then proceeds to drive right past where they have conveniently and safely waiting for years.

The superintendent’s office has not answered my questions about this decision, so I’ll answer them myself.

Q: How does eliminating a well-used bus stop on the route save money?

A: It doesn’t. Instead, the cost of transporting our children is multiplied by the numbers of parents who will drive their kids to Oldham. 

Q: How does asking children to walk over a mile carrying heavy backpacks prepare them to learn?

A: It doesn’t. It endangers our children by exposing them to more traffic and uneven sidewalks. It causes physical harm to posture and adds stress to the day—both bad for learning.

 Q: What does this decision teach our kids about sustainable communities? 

A:  Nothing. It harms the spirit of the neighborhood. Morning chats that allow parents to share information and kids to form friendships will be degraded. The environment will be harmed by short trips and idling cars,

LET’S REINSTATE THE BUS STOP AT SHORE AND BULLOCKS POINT. 

LET’S MAKE SMART DECISIONS FOR OUR CHILDREN AND OUR NEIGHBORHOODS.

LET’S DEMAND ACCOUNTABILITY FROM OUR SCHOOL ADMINISTRATORS.

Sincerely,
Jennifer Campbell

Linda Ellinwood September 14, 2012 at 03:46 PM
By eliminating the bus stop for bus 13 to RMS from Riverside Library and having the children from my neighborhood have to walk all the way down to Oldham does not make any common sense either. Instead, my husband drives him there in the morning and I have to leave work every day 1 hour earlier to be there to pick him up. It is too far of a distance for a 6th grader to walk. I have not received any of my phone calls or emails returned either from the school department.
Rick September 14, 2012 at 04:38 PM
How is eliminating stops saving money? You go down Bullocks Point avr, Turn left on Crescent View then left on Willett. How hard is it to give kids a ride to school. I don't understand why stops along that route are eliminated.
Ann Langello September 14, 2012 at 05:04 PM
This is extremely dangerous. What about the children who cannot get a ride. This change is ruining parents' schedules and causing more harm to children. If the bus goes right by the stop that they had before, then reinstate it. You can wait forever for the School Department or any/other person to get back to you. Next step, go to the Journal. Do they realize how fast the cars go on Bullocks Point Avenue?
Linda Ellinwood September 14, 2012 at 05:07 PM
I think this is a huge injustice to our children. The lack of response from anyone at the school department is disgraceful!!! The amount of times I have called, left messages, and sometimes not leaving a message, just hoping someone will answer the phone is unacceptable. If any business was run like that, they would be out of business!! You can not get a response from anyone! So frustrating!
Parent of 6th grader September 14, 2012 at 06:59 PM
My self a Parent of a 6th grader do not agree with the fact that mychild would(will) have to walk from our home I luckly do not work as of yet in the am hours buit i will be soon . So then what ? My child will have to walk 1.5 miles to school . I dont agree . I feel it is extremley dangerous for our kids to have to cross bullocks point ave then willett ave and then to have to walk on forbes st ? Not right there is no reason that they can not stop to pick these children up when they are driving right by them anyhow . Something needs to be done .
DD September 14, 2012 at 08:38 PM
To Parent of 6th Grader: It most definitely is an injustice to have to have a 6th grade child walk to RMS from Bullocks Point Avenue. These days there are more cars on the road, back packs are full to the brim and heavy, our weather is unpredictable, the child will have to leave earlier in the am, there are more crazies out on the prowl also! Not to mention that crossing those streets is darn well dangerous! If a bus drives right by them then they should be picking those children up! EP has it wrong on the bus situation amongst other things!! Also, it is deplorable that Linda is not getting any response from the school department regarding her childs transportation issue too. The reason you get no response is nobody wants to deal with it. The head of transportation is retiring and could care less!!!
Mary O September 15, 2012 at 02:51 PM
I also have a problem we live on Bullocks Point ave. and my daughter now must walk to rms also (her dad use to drive her but he recently passed this April ) bus 19 goes right up willet ave (use to b a stop at willet ave just before pawtucket ave) they no longer have it, they refuse to reinstate it and she now must walk Bullocks Pt av , to BUSY willet av,, then cross and walk up busy forbes st (all by her self!!! with very heavy back pack)...I CAN BET U IF THE TRANSPORTATION DEPT. HAD A CHILD IN THIS SITUATION..BUS#19 would b stopping and picking up THEIR child!!!! their response was "then the bus would have to pick up any kid who walks"...WELL THE BUSES SHOULD ALREADY B DOING THIS..if the bus is driving right pass kids who walk STOP AND PICK THEM UP!!!! we pay taxes to provide the buses & pay their salaries SMH @ you in school transportation dept..THIS IS HORRIBLE WHAT YOU ARE ALL DOING TO OUR CHILDREN..guess cuz all your kids all grown..you all don't give a shit!!!!! we not only are grieving but you also add another burden to our lives
Mike Sisto September 15, 2012 at 07:40 PM
Vote the bastards out! Every time a city is mismanaged it falls on the shoulders of parents and children. Enough is enough already!
Jennife Campbell September 16, 2012 at 12:30 AM
Hi Everyone- Let's all continue to speak out here and with phone calls, messages and emails to the superintendent's office. The Transportation Director, Mr. Linneman did respond to my email. A big part of the problem seems to be that he thinks that Bates Avenue is two blocks north of Oldham School, so I'm hoping that once he realizes that it's actually right across the street, he'll consider reinstating the bus stop either at Shore Road or at the Library. Let's keep the pressure up!
Linda Ellinwood September 16, 2012 at 12:55 AM
I spoke to the transportation director on Friday. I informed him of the fact that the bus stops were right across the street. Not only did he not care, he stated that it would not change. The computer took everyone from one side of Bullocks Pt Ave to pick up the bus at Oldham and if you live on the other side you pick the bus up at Bates. He said the library stop would NOT be reinstated because it is too close to students who may not qualify for the bus. So the bus students need to walk a distance away so the walkers are not upset that they do not qualify for the bus! He was rude and only called me back because I had sent an email to the superintendent's office regarding my concerns of several messages left and no return calls. I do not understand why a stop can not meet the kids halfway down Bullocks Pt Ave. I am very disappointed In the fact that no one seems to care about our children's safety walking all that way down Bullocks Pt Ave. The bus stops should be farther apart. This shows the huge disconnect they the school department employees have with the students and parents. How can he not realize Bates is across the street from Beacon Park where the teachers parking lot is for Oldham?
DD September 16, 2012 at 02:59 AM
Oh he realizes it Linda! He's being a jerk -- its all about money! And Ray L doesnt give a hoot about the safety of the students!! He is retiring soon anyhow. They cut buses and reinstated bus limits making them longer, and of course I bet the Budget Commission of EP probably okayed it with smiles to save bucks! I cannot believe that they want kids to walk to RMS in the am with heavy backpacks and unsafe sidewalks and crossing. It is very busy up near that Schroeders, Forbes Street as I travel by that way in the morning. What is wrong with these people!!!
Dermody September 16, 2012 at 04:05 AM
I understand the frustration in all of this (we too are faced with the same issue. Our foster child is now a walker, where before she had a bus) We have reached out to a couple of other parents and between the three of us, we have a carpool circle going. may or may not help you. I gave up complaining and fighting because I saw no point in any of it. They are not going to change it (understandably, we have financial issues we need to resolve) so my wife and I had to come up with a solution. winter is coming. Good luck to you all.
Dermody September 16, 2012 at 04:19 AM
Reminder that it was the Budget Commission that made these cuts not the school dept. or school committee.
Tammy September 16, 2012 at 09:15 AM
In my opinion the should put the busses back the way they where because the busses go rite past the stops anyway it's stupid for our children to walk so far to get to the bus stop .... I say stop putting our kids life at risk and really think of what the jurkes we hire to run our schools do all day they are all lazy and our tax mone goes for them to sit behind a desk and do sh!!!!!!!! And u all know what I mean or does the school want to pay us for bringing our kids to school tell Ray to get everything the way it was cuz he has many unhappy parents
Linda Ellinwood September 17, 2012 at 12:38 PM
Yes, the budget commission made the $ cuts and that includes cutting 10 busses. However, the transportation department decides the route the busses take and where they will stop, not the budget commission. So all I am asking is that the transportation department looks at why bus 13 stops almost across the street for two bust stops instead of moving one further down Bullock Pt Ave to help our children have less of a walk. I am asking them to listen to parents concerns instead of dismissing them because the computer decides the stops??? Really, then why do we have him or his secretary there and paying them if the computer can do it and they can't take the time to see how ridiculous those two stops are and modify the route. It will not take any extra time for the bus stop to be moved a few blocks further down Bullocks Pt Ave.
Jennife Campbell September 17, 2012 at 01:58 PM
Let's call the Journal and one of the local news stations if we haven't had positive news by tomorrow. It's not ONLY about the bus-stop now, but about poor decision making and lack of public accountability. I'll find contact information for the ProJo today so we can be ready to call them in a day or two. Does anyone have suggestions about the best TV station to call in terms of local news?
A concerned Citizen September 17, 2012 at 03:22 PM
The budget commission may be responsible for the cuts but it is the city officials that but us so far in the red there was no choice. If the city opened their eyes a few years ago when things were just starting to get in the red and did something about it the city wouldn't be where it is and the Budget Commission would not have to be here. Instead everyone turned a cheek and let our deficit get to almost $7M. City officials did this but the budget commission has to do the nasty clean up.
A concerned Citizen September 17, 2012 at 03:47 PM
I think the solution should be in the bus stops. ok fine cut 10 busses but redo the bus stops. Maybe call the transportation company that runs the busses. Not that it is there fault but because they are the ones who know bussing then maybe then can work with the parents to come up with a better route/stops plan that can be submitted to the city. Unfortunately this is all going to get worse before it gets better.
CZ September 18, 2012 at 04:25 PM
I heard the same rumor. What happens now is that it puts someone whose heart is in the right place running against someone who is pursuing political aspirations supported by those with clout and money. And who suffers? The kids.
Tamra September 18, 2012 at 04:45 PM
What rumor? My neighbors came up with a great Idea. They have a retired lady that picks up her kids (in a van) and a few kids from the neighborhood. they each chip in for gas and the kids are even safer then they were on the bus! I love seeing the community come together to help each other out. I will say that with this election, I will not vote for anyone who is a politician, a lawyer etc. I want real people preferably someone who has been a resident and knows how things used to be and will get that back for us. I'm tired of all these big money people running our town. I want real people who went to our public schools and have kids in our public schools. They need to feel our pain.
Linda Ellinwood September 18, 2012 at 05:31 PM
Just received an email stating that no stop will be added. His reason is because a stop further down Bullocks Pt Ave would be placed ina walking area of students not eligiible for a bus? So there you have it....

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