Late school buses have parents in DD2 school district frustrated

Late school buses have parents in DD2 school district frustrated

DORCHESTER COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - School has only been in session a few weeks, and parents in Dorchester School District 2 say they've already had enough with the bus system.

"I've been driving my son to school," said mother Bree Scales.

On top of being a mother, Scales works full-time and goes to school. Still, the inconvenience of driving her 5-year-old son, Jayden, is something she says she'll have to deal with, because she doesn't trust Durham School Services.

It's something that came to a head last week.

"It was about 7:20 a.m. I said, hey our children are still waiting outside," Scales said.

The bus is scheduled to pick-up the students at 6:55 a.m. and bring them to Fort Dorchester Elementary.

The tardy bell at the school rings at 7:25 a.m.

Scales said the school bus was almost an hour late that day.

Now, she doesn't leave it to chance.

"That's our main focus, 'get these children to school, get them to class on time,'" Scales said.

Other parents say this isn't an isolated incident.

"There's not enough bus drivers, they're late," mother of two, Katherine Pinner, said.

"It's too much to handle," mother of three, Lori Chesser, said. "I mean, we all have other kids and other jobs that we have to get to on time."

Durham school services has 137 school bus routes in DD2. Representatives say that's one of the problems; they don't have enough drivers to fill all the routes.

"We have about 10 or 12 open slots," Durham School Services General Manager Ron Wilson said.

Wilson said a shortage of drivers isn't the only issue.

"Sometimes buses break down," Wilson said. "There's a fluctuation of ridership. There might be people who ride in the morning who don't ride in the afternoon."

Wilson said traffic is also a big issue.

He said, they've improved their communication department and change is coming.

"We're looking at another one to two weeks to make sure we have all the routes nailed down."

When the issues are worked-out, Scales said maybe she won't take her son to school, she'll let him ride the bus.

It's restored convenience she's ready for.

Dorchester District two also created special email where parents can express their frustrations. You can find that email HERE.

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