Education

Delays mean school buses are picking up kids earlier and dropping them off later

Parents are complaining about changing school bus schedules in Horry County. File photo taken on International Walk to School Day, Oct. 8, 2014 near Ocean Bay Elementary School.
Parents are complaining about changing school bus schedules in Horry County. File photo taken on International Walk to School Day, Oct. 8, 2014 near Ocean Bay Elementary School. jblackmon@thesunnews.com

Some Horry County students are waiting in the dark before 6 a.m. for the bus to pick them up.

And their parents are not happy.

St. James Intermediate School parent Pamela McCall said her 11-year-old daughter missed the bus Wednesday after the bus schedule changed without McCall’s knowledge.

“They switched the time,” McCall said. “Instead of being 6:35 a.m. to pick her up it was 6:05 a.m. So of course we missed the bus. She didn’t receive a letter and I didn’t know anything. I was at the bus stop in my vehicle and I wasn’t told the time was changing.”

Traffic and delays in getting the buses loaded have caused buses to run earlier in order to get students to school on time, said school district spokesperson Teal Britton, who added that some buses have been dropping of students after class almost as late as 5:30 p.m. from St. James-area schools.

She said some of the problems should be alleviated after Labor Day.

“They can tighten up on the load time but there’s not a whole lot they can do to deal with traffic,” Britton said.

St. James Elementary School has also adjusted its bus schedule, with one bus picking students up as early as 6:04 a.m., according to a bus scheduled released on the school’s Facebook page.

“I think it’s not a good idea because it’s causing these kids to get up really early,” said McCall. “I don’t know how it is for anyone else, but before it wasn’t dark when I was walking my child to the bus stop.”

Britton said that there are bus stops as early as 6:05 a.m. in every attendance area in the district, and that officials are working on tightening up bus schedules.

Christian Boschult: 843-626-0218, @TSN_Christian

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