This school year, kids who ride the school bus in Providence are experiencing an unprecedented level of problems: late to school, late getting home, missing school bus monitors, clueless drivers, and more. There's been a fair amount of press about this, so I won't go into the gory details here. At the most basic level, kids aren't reliably getting to or from school because the district has underfunded transportation, and the district's contract is with First Student, a company with a reputation of poor service both within and beyond Providence. There is a vast amount of detail and nuance contained with those basic facts, and if you're interested in delving into it, read on to connect with others who are doing just that.
If your children have been experiencing these problems, or if you are are generally concerned about Providence school transportation practices and polices, please join a Facebook group that an awesomely can-do parent, Michele Meek, has started to gather those concerned to share information and address the issue with the district and the district's bus provided, First Students. Go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/503295836430396/ and join the Providence Parents Concerned about School Busses group. Read through the posts and comments; some of the issues and challenges that families are facing as a result of unreliable school bus transportation are frightening and sad.
You can also visit http://us7.campaign-archive2.com/home/?u=46bef54b3dc49dc8140b7915a&id=c364889d75 to subscribe to an email list that Michele has created to keep people informed about the issues and the city's response (via that link, you can also access the three email updates that she has sent out thus far).
So far, Michele and other parents have organized a meeting of concerned parents earlier this month, and followed up by bringing the issue to the most recent PPSD school board meeting, which took place on Monday, 9/23. You can read detailed coverage of the meeting here: http://www.golocalprov.com/news/providence-parents-blast-busing-problems-at-school-board-meeting/.
Please join and please spread the word.