No decision on Merced Co bus issue made

March 13, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
A union issue is keeping a North Valley school board from making an immediate decision on bringing back some of its bus routes.

The Merced Union High School District is discussing about the transportation issue that's become a year-long battle.

Parents and community members were hoping district leaders would make a decision about those bus routes on Wednesday. They were cut last spring and while there was no decision, no one is ready to stop fighting for transportation.

Discussion was abruptly cut off Wednesday evening. The Merced Union High School District had planned to talk about options - hire multiple part time, or one full time bus driver.

"The options presented to you by staff are a good start and a good way to reinstate transportation by the end of the year so thank you for staring the conversation," Melissa Kelly-Ortega of United Way said.

It's been a long year for Merced parents and community members..

Students who live within a five mile radius of their high school have been walking, catching rides or taking the city bus to school since last spring when district leaders cut their buses.

The move saved the district more than a million dollars.

Students and parents even launched a campaign to bring the buses back.

"The congestion in the parking is increased considerably I've seen students almost hit by cars on numerous occasions," substitute teacher Yvette Brisco said.

District leaders also heard from nurses, college students and from the Merced City Council.

"We serve the same students and the same families within the city of merced. Their issues are our issues, if there's children on the street that can't get to and from places safely we have to do our part they have to do their part," Mary-Michal Rawling of the Merced City Council said.

They all say they'll be back at the next meeting voicing their opinion until they get the answer they want.

And district leaders say they still need to meet with the school employees union which is why they didn't make a decision on Wednesday.

They say they'll be reconsidering the issue within the next few weeks.


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