The Bus Run Around

I have driven my children to school every day since my oldest started attending Strong Start. Last year both my girls were asking repeatedly to take the school bus – they really wanted the experience. So I told them to wait for this year, I would apply but couldn’t guarantee that they would actually get to take it.

In May an email reminder went out that it was time to apply for the bus and I jumped onto my computer eager to give my children the experience that they really want. I filled out the application and received another email telling me that the application had been submitted.

I thought it was weird that I hadn’t been contacted prior to the school year but figured we must not qualify to actually take the bus, probably for living just on the line of acceptance, and proceeded to drive my kids to school. But they asked about the bus – still wanting to be on it.

So I took the time to talk to the office, get the phone number of the transportation department, and call them. I was told that my children were going to school out of catchment and that because it was a choice school they were not allowed to take the bus. The call then disconnected. I’m not sure if they hung up on me or if my crappy cell tower connection was the cause.

So I called back a couple of days later and was told the same thing. Turns out the address on file I haven’t lived in for over two years. I give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that Chrome must have auto-filled the wrong information over top of what I typed in. I give them our correct address and am told that they will reach out to me the next morning as they need to confirm with the school that the address is correct.

That takes us to yesterday. I never got that morning phone call so at the end of the school day I called them again while waiting for the bell to ring. I am told that they are short-staffed (isn’t everywhere these days????) and that they would put me on hold and call the school immediately. When I am taken off hold I’m told that I am in the catchment and that I will receive an email in the evening with the bus route information.

Six in the morning I awake for the day to help my kids get ready to go and I don’t have the email. So I call yet again. This time it is a different lady who tells me that I am at a choice school and so I can’t get my kids on the bus. I quickly ran her through what had happened. She tries to update our address in the system but finds it doesn’t work. She told me where to catch the bus and at what time, ensuring me that my girls would be able to go on the bus this morning.

My excited children get their backpacks on their shoulders and we walk the 500 meters to the bus stop, just to be told that they were not allowed on the bus because the driver never got an email from HQ regarding them. My kids were in tears, and I was near tears as I had worked until 2 a.m. the night before, and started the walk back to my house. As we walked I called the transportation department once again. It turns out that the woman at the desk had sent a text message to the driver of the other bus route that is in walking distance of our home regarding this morning but that she will ensure that they are good to go on the bus that we were rejected from this morning for the ride home.

I have told my kids that if for some reason they are not actually allowed on the bus this evening then have the school call me and I will pick them up. But all this seems like a lot of hassle for a bus ride that is more a want than a need.

Published by Lady Bowering

Lady Bowering is a Canadian life form who finds amusement in making up stories to the actions that people and creatures around her display. In her spare time Lady Bowering can often be found with a cup of tea in hand or using her especially useful talent of napping. A self proclaimed digital-hippie, art lover and a recovering interobang addict she dreams of one day owning a business of her own; as long as she can survive the tickle attacks her family dares to inflict upon her!

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