Students, parents frustrated over transportation woes at South San ISD

Elementary students crossing 6-lane road to get to class

SAN ANTONIO – Students from South San Antonio Independent School District gave school leaders an earful during Wednesday’s regular meeting.

Hutchins Elementary School kids who live in the Garden Valley community said they are forced to walk about a mile to school along busy Zarzamora Street and cross the six-lane road twice a day.

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Fifth-grader Rosa Gonzalez boldly asked the members, “Do you walk to work?” she was one of about half a dozen people who spoke and asked the district to provide buses. This is one of several transportation problems the district has been facing since it consolidated schools.

At one point in the early part of the school year the city was providing the kids with a crossing guard Superintendent Abelardo Saavedra said, but there were only a few kids who used the crosswalk so they canceled the service.

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The district then provided a police officer, but canceled the service for the same reason. Saavedra agreed that something needs to be done to ensure kids get to school safely.

I agree with the parents and students who spoke, crossing that street is a dangerous situation and the district needs to provide that relief,” he said.

Transportation will be provide for the kids in Garden Valley, Saavedra said a bus will stop at Zarzamora and Ansley to pick them up. Some 750 letters went out to families in the district offering busing services to those who meet certain guidelines and return the contract by next week.

Saavedra said this may not solve all of the issues, but it should resolve the majority of them.

Stacey Alderete, a former board member and parent, said the district will still be leaving some kids out.

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“It’s a first come, first serve basis,” she said. “We have several routes throughout the district that are dangerous. To an adult it may not be, but to children who are crossing these major streets they’re dangerous.”

Parents will have until next Wednesday to sign up for bus services.

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