Hoover School system enters final year with bus services

HOOVER, Ala. (WIAT) – In Hoover the start of school means a controversial plan is still on course to save the district money. That’s where the district plans to end most bus service by August of 2014.

This time next year there might be a lot fewer school buses on the road in Hoover. That’s if Hoover City Schools stay with the plan to eliminate all but special education bus service for students by the start of school in August 2014.

The Hoover school board estimates the transportation cuts will save the system about two and half million dollars per year.  It’s been called a difficult, but important step to protect classroom funding because the school system has been running a deficit.

There are some families who are going to have a tough time adapting to the changes, especially those with children of different school ages and single or dual working parent families- who can’t afford to be late to work. Outside Bluff Park Elementary School on the first day of school Monday morning, Hoover Parent Daphne Hodges explained how it will impact her.

“I am a single mom of three so which means I will have to bring the baby boy here then take him and his brother to Hoover and I have to be to work at 8 o’clock so, that’s an adjustment, but it’s I guess an adjustment that I’m willing to make or have to make if the buses are not here next year. But it would be nice to keep them!” said Hodges.

A Hoover school board spokesperson has been saying from the very beginning about this controversial decision that they know it’s going to be tough, but that’s why they gave parents a year to plan and find alternate arrangements.

Some parents say those plans might include moving to a school system with bus service.

Another big concern has to do with the potential traffic nightmare from all the extra cars on the road.

Over on the other side of Hoover off Caldwell Mill Road, near Spain Park some people who live and work in the area expect the flow of traffic to slow down considerably.

“There’s not much at the drop off- now pickup there’s more traffic because of rush hour. It’s definitely going to increase the traffic in this general area when people are having to drop their children off and picking their children up. There’s definitely going to be more of a bottleneck,” said Barry Ohare, Brava Rotisserie Grill.

The board has heard some public input since the announcement was made, but so far the board has not voted on any alternatives to the transportation cuts, and no meetings have been scheduled to address the issue.

For now it appears the plan to cut bus services heavily in Hoover is expected to take effect as originally planned in August of 2014.

Copyright 2013 WIAT-CBS42

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