I Am Appalled At My Son's School Secretary Today.

Lounge By Carolynlovescake Updated 18 Sep 2008 , 8:49pm by Aliwis000

Carolynlovescake Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 3:18pm
post #1 of 26

Let me start off by saying I am a rule follower. They are there for a reason even if I don't always understand the "why" for them being in place.

Our neighborhood is full of parents that don't care as well which in return allows the kids from those homes to run around doing anything right/wrong. They don't know what rules even are, they are mouthy (swearing included), can't/won't follow rules etc.

Needless to say my son can play with 2 kids on this block. 1 of them has parents as strict or stricter than me and the other I've known for years and he knows how to behave when playing here.

Also the next street over has a very large apartment complex that works with the county. They place sex offenders there temporariarly as a transition home between jail and a permanent address. (Which means my son is only allowed to play out back unless I'm doing yard work or working in my flower garden out front and then he is to stay with in eye distance of me.)

So with all that said...

One of the boys today announced "I hate this stop I'm changing to the other one" (the next street over, yes the one with the apartment complex).

When the bus arrived I asked her and she said "not allowable. I'm running late please call the school and we together will take care of it when I get there."

So I call the school and the secretary told me they are not responsible for children doing this and they can if they want. I said "even getting off at the wrong stop" and she replied "I SAID it's between the bus driver and the parents."

Great... that means if my son is given the idea by this other kid and wants to get off at the street before our stop and walk around the block home (past the apartment complex) he can with out me knowing.

I explained the situation and she said "it's not the school's business!" and hung up on me.

Is it me or does this seem wrong?

Last year the kids were fist fighting at the stop and the principal told me when I reported it that all bus stops are school jurisdiction and the rules at school also apply to the bus stop. So if that is the case wouldn't changing stops be wrong since they need to know which stop they get on/get off of?

I am going to send an e-mail directly to the principal and ask. This concerns me deeply.

Is it me being an over protective mom and wanting to keep these kids from my street safe and following the rules or does this situatioin seem off to you too with the school's stance?

25 replies
MichelleM77 Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 3:26pm
post #2 of 26

I thought you said that the drivers don't allow kids to get off at different stops, so why would they let your son?

CakeDiva73 Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 3:34pm
post #3 of 26

Okay, I'm going to give it to you straight......the school cannot control which kids get off at which bus stop. It's up to the parents to set the rules, put the fear of God in the kids if they disobey and possibly check up on the kids to make sure the rules are being followed.

The secretary sounds like a tool and I'm sorry she was so rude. My Mom was a school secretary for years so I have the unique experience of hearing what they hear - which is straight up madness all day long!! The school can break up fights, bullying, drugs, etc at the bus stops but think of the poor bus driver and how he/she can possible keep track of who gets on and off, not to mention which stop they are supposed to get off at - and still stay on time for all the pick-ups.

Its a logistical nightmare.....what about a day when parents have made arrangements for one kid to get off at the other kids stop (say to play after school, study club, etc.) How can this all be enforced?

I feel like the secretary could have taken a moment out of her day to explain this to you rather then shoot you down - maybe she was having a bad day or 9 kids were waiting for hall passes - or maybe she is just a bit of a witch. icon_biggrin.gif

I think you need to lay down the law with your son. If you feel like he will break the rules given the opportunity, advise him you will be spontaneously checking up to make sure he is getting of at the correct stop and be clear about whatever consequence will follow if you find he had disobeyed you.

Good Luck.....and you're not being overprotective - you are being a good parent. icon_smile.gif

-K8memphis Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 3:39pm
post #4 of 26

I don't know. I've fought so many school battles. What I would do is tell my kid the dangers involved and impress upon him to keep his own self safe. I'd tell him he gets to make that choice and the consequences involved. He's gotta do his part.

To me this is a kid problem.

Again I've had so many egregious school problems this one would fall on me and my kid to resolve. To me, if the bus driver made him get off at the wrong stop or something, that's a school problem.

I would walk to the other block every day and watch from afar to see who gets off there and then collect up junior or get myself home to meet him with praise.

MichelleM77 Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 4:00pm
post #5 of 26

I guess I'm still confused on the situation, but if you have a concern about your child riding the bus, then I would take him/her off the bus and drive them. I did that for the first few years until I was comfortable. Took time out my day and gas, but it was worth it to make sure he was safe and we were comfortable with the situation as a family.

If it's someone else's kid that you are concerned about, well there isn't much you can do unless you say something to the parents.

Why are they letting them hang out at the bus stop alone anyway? My son is in middle school and I still stand with him for the bus and the stop is the end of our driveway!

indydebi Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 4:31pm
post #6 of 26

My granddaughter's school system has a rule about her getting off the bus: If mom or a designated person isn't at the bus stop to pick them up, the driver does NOT allow the child to get off the bus. I had to pick her up one day and my daughter had to inform the driver ahead of time, tell the driver that gramma would be in a white van with "Cater It Simple" all over the side .... and daughter told me the driver would not drive away until she saw that my granddaugther recognized me and was safely in my very well marked van.

lardbutt Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 4:53pm
post #7 of 26

The secretary had no business acting like a child herself! If you were concerned about the child in question, I would have called his parent. Then they can decide what to do if anything with him. It's sad, but their choice if they don't care.

If you are concerned about your child, then you need to contact the school district. They are in charge of all rules and regulations......not the little crabby secretary! icon_lol.gif

I don't think you are being ever protective! It's your duty! Hopefully you've instilled in your child what he is and is not allowed to do. I would definitely have a chat about doing the right thing though.

Hope everything works out.

mkolmar Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 5:02pm
post #8 of 26

My kids are not allowed to be released to anyone other than my DH and I plus the grandparents who are on the release form I signed. I had to sign one for the school to keep plus the bus. (I have 2 totally different schools my kids go too.
A few times last year (about 3) my dad had to pick up my kids from school/or get them off of the bus. I had to call ahead of time and he had to prove who he was.
There is no way that the school system I'm in would allow a child to get off at a different stop. Even if a note is signed by a parent allowing it, the school doesn't.

mis Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 5:30pm
post #9 of 26

Where I live the kids can only get off at their stop, if they want off at another stop they have to have a note sent in and then they get a bus pass. I would contact the school board and I would contact the principal about the secretary.

CakeDiva73 Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 6:02pm
post #10 of 26

As I am reading this, it occurs to me we don't know how old your son is. I think the rules for pick-up & drop-off differ greatly from elementary school kids vs. middle school/high school.

If they are in elementary school, I am thinking the parent should be waiting at the bus stop so where the child gets off wouldn't be a problem since you are there to crown them if they don't get off at the right one. I

Middle school kids are usually old enough that the bus driver doesn't monitor who gets off where - same with HS kids. Around here, all the buses pick-up and drop off literally in front of my house and it is always crowded with parents either walking them to the stop or picking up (elementary bus.) The middle school and HS buses, on the other hand, are a free for all.

For some reason when I first read this, I assumed your son was around 11 or 12 years old. If he quite a bit younger, then I think the bus would have more control.

lardbutt Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 7:17pm
post #11 of 26
Originally Posted by CakeDiva73

As I am reading this, it occurs to me we don't know how old your son is. I think the rules for pick-up & drop-off differ greatly from elementary school kids vs. middle school/high school.
For some reason when I first read this, I assumed your son was around 11 or 12 years old. If he quite a bit younger, then I think the bus would have more control.

See I didn't even catch that we don't know how ond the child is. icon_redface.gif Actually, I for some crazy reason, have been thinking we talking about a young elementary aged child. Where did I get that? icon_cry.gif

Anyway, Yeah, age does make a difference.

Karema Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 7:19pm
post #12 of 26

I have the same question, How old is your son? I think that any child in elementary school should be picked up. I don't understand how parents let their 6 and 7 year olds go to the bus stop. Kids are getting kidnapped and killed and parents seem to want to blame the school or people in the neighborhood. My child is my responsibility and it is my duty as a parent to make sure they are safe. I think the school should tell kids to get of at their designated spot but unfortunatly they may not remember everyones spot until the middle of the year. Is there a reason why you can not meet your child at the stop if you are that concerned? Thats what I would do until I got to know the busdriver and aide so they would know where my child got off. Good luck

michellenj Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 8:28pm
post #13 of 26

Regardless of the bus stop situation, the secretary should not have hung up on you! That is very unprofessional, and her people skills must suck if that is the best way that she could deal with you.

mbelgard Posted 5 Sep 2008 , 9:04pm
post #14 of 26

The school not being responsible doesn't sound right to me.

Even in high school we had to get off at our designated stops unless there was a note.

Where I live now the kids have to bring a note to the teacher if there is a bus change, even a phone call won't do, it's school policy for grades K-12. They also don't let the younger kids off unless they know the parents are home. My cousin-in-law's kid has to have someone open the door now to show that someone is home before the driver will let him off, at one point he was let off when it was really cold out. If no one is home they will keep the kids on the bus and bring them back to the school, then the parents have to come pick them up. I should note that our school is a rural one where most of the kids are let off at their house instead of a bus stop.

funcakes Posted 6 Sep 2008 , 12:49am
post #15 of 26

The other posts are probably right when they say that there are different rules about bus stops depending on the age of the kids being transported.

I would encourage you to check the school staff listings, look at the website if they have one and find the person who is in charge of the district's transportation. This is the person you will want to talk to. They will have the info you want. The secretary sounds like she was rude, but with the number of district policies passed at every board meeting, she might not be able to keep up with all the details, especially with the overwhelming demands those secretaries deal with every day and all for a pretty pitiful salary.

fondantgrl Posted 6 Sep 2008 , 7:53am
post #16 of 26

Maybe the secretary got tired of repeating herself that's why she hung up.

The school is not there to monitor who gets off where and which stop, and the bus driver cannot possibly baby sit everyone's child. I'm a parent myself and don't get me wrong, but I think there are limitations as to what the school can and cannot do. The only time my son rides in the school bus is when they go on field trips, with me included. I always drive him to school and picks him up everyday for the past 6 yrs. now.

I hope you will find a solution to this. How about complaining to the Principal about the Secretary ? Good luck.

Dordee Posted 6 Sep 2008 , 3:10pm
post #17 of 26

First off let me say I did not read every single reply so this might have already been suggested....I would tell the bus driver that my son was absolutely not allowed to get off the bus unless I was standing there to get him as soon as he got off the bus. All this mumbo jumbo about the schools not being responsible for much of anything when it comes to bus routes is crap!! In my school district the bus driver will not allow children of a certain age to get off the bus without a parent or approved adult there. If a child (any age) wants to get off at another stop then he/she must have an adult give the bus driver a note. It is the school districts job to ensure that our children are safe until they are released to their parents. I know that's the way it is in good ole KY.

thems_my_kids Posted 6 Sep 2008 , 8:06pm
post #18 of 26

If I want my kids to get off at their grandparents house, I have to send a note to the school, then they make a note and give my note to the busdriver. I don't think it's right for a kids to get off at a different stop unless the parents say it's ok.

sweettoothmom Posted 9 Sep 2008 , 8:59pm
post #19 of 26

I have the same concern for my kids who would have to walk right past an apartment complex filled with human scum (sex offenders) to come from and go to school.
SO my solution is they are not allowed to walk. I make the time every day to be there to pick them up and take them to school.

Our neighbor way down the road allows there child to ride a bike but he must go the long way around which is far away from the apartment complex but still too far out of the way for a 2nd grader to be alone in my book.

I would contact the principal to see if they are aware of the apartment complex and its inhabitants. If the principal isnt then he/she might not be concerned. Here our principals dont have any pull over the buses. The school board would have to be addressed. And well our school board leaves ALOT to be desired. We didnt have enough money for books for the kindergarten class this year but the board members are going to a national conference in Hawaii. And might I say all expenses are paid by the district!
So call anyone and everyone let them know what awaits those kids on that stop and then I would certainly address the fact that no bus driver is a personal chauffeur for a child. THe driver is the adult and should say listen young'un, your stopping where your scheduled to stop and there are no exceptions. I would think making special arrangements for little bobby to go home with little jimmy today etc... would make the bus driver crazy!

mkerton Posted 11 Sep 2008 , 12:41am
post #20 of 26

My Mom works in the office at an elementary school, you would be AMAZED at what secretaries have to deal with, in my opinion we are living in an age where we think everything should be catered to us and our child. Not saying that about you at all, I think you should call transportation in your school district, when I rode the bus in HIGH SCHOOL my bus driver would not let me off at a stop other than my own (even when at the beginning of the year they listed me wrong and I had to walk 3 times a far to get home until we got the problem corrected).... so I am amazed in this day in age they are not even more guarded. That said, my Mom is asked to make exception after exception after exception for literally HUNDREDS of students, some parents want to pick their kids up 3 days a week but expect the school and the kindergartner to remember that 2 days a week they ride the bus. Some people want their kids to be let off on one stop x number of days, and on an entirely different bus and different stop on the other days....... I cannot fathom trying to keep this all straight, in my opinion schools should give 3 options, you either ride the bus, you are a car rider, or you are a walker.........end of story.... I know they try to accomodate many but dang it can be hard and it sure can leave things open to mistakes.

sweettoothmom Posted 11 Sep 2008 , 4:52pm
post #21 of 26

That is so true! This would leave the schools and the drivers open to so much liability. I dont know if I could ever imagine what a hard time it must be keeping track of that many children at one time let alone knowing thier individual changing schedules.

bakincakin Posted 12 Sep 2008 , 12:37pm
post #22 of 26

At our school, if you don't have a note to be let off at a different stop, you can't get off at any other stop but your own. Period.

Kiddiekakes Posted 12 Sep 2008 , 1:22pm
post #23 of 26

Here in Calgary the bus drivers are only allowed to drop the child off at their designated stop...ONLY!! If there is no parent/guardian there to receive the child ( I believe the younger ones only..after a certain age they can get off with out a guardian/parent) the driver MUST take the child back to the school and then they call you or the next emergency number supplied by you to the school to come get the child.I think it is ludicrus that a child can dictate to the driver where he/her feels like getting off..No way...and If I were you I would be contacting that principal pronto...and as for the rude secretary..ask her if she has kids of her own!!

dg10148 Posted 13 Sep 2008 , 10:52am
post #24 of 26

My daughter called the schools bus transportation and told them I would be picking up my granddaughter from the bus stop and they said the only way she could go with me was if I showed them my drivers licence. I though that was a good idea. She is only in first grade

sweettoothmom Posted 14 Sep 2008 , 7:38pm
post #25 of 26
Originally Posted by dg10148

My daughter called the schools bus transportation and told them I would be picking up my granddaughter from the bus stop and they said the only way she could go with me was if I showed them my drivers licence. I though that was a good idea. She is only in first grade

Thats a great idea!

Aliwis000 Posted 18 Sep 2008 , 8:49pm
post #26 of 26

In our school district kids, no matter what age, have to get off at their stop, not one street early, or one street late, just their stop. But getting on is a different thing, you can get picked up where ever.

Its amazing how different every school district is, youwould think they would come up with the safest possible solution and put it in place everywhere.


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