50 km too far to bus kids, say Swift Current residents
Parents and students in Swift Current told local school district officals they were opposed to busing children to Clarenville because it was too far away.
More than 120 people attended a public hearing in the Burin Peninsula community Wednesday night, held by the Eastern School District to discuss its proposal to close the community's K-12 school.
The board says it would bus children to schools in Clarenville instead — about 50 kilometres away.
"What will happen if I get sick while travelling on the bus?" wondered Grade 6 student, Jolene Butt. "Will the bus driver take me home? Or I'll have to stay at school all day? Right now my mom can come up to the school and get me because she's only five minutes away."
Swift Current resident Roger Jamieson expressed concerns about the weather, claiming that even on a good day, the return journey would take at least 90 minutes by bus.
"On a snowy day, or a foggy day, we're looking at two hours to have the children of this community on a school bus," said Jamieson during the meeting. "That's unacceptable."
The meeting was one in a series the school board is holding on its recommendations to close five rural schools in eastern Newfoundland.
Four other rural schools are on the chopping block, in addition to Swift Current Academy.
The board will vote on the closures in December.