Metro East Parents Upset Over School Bus Cuts

EAST ST. LOUIS, IL (KPLR)– Parents in East St. Louis spent their Monday morning at the District 189 administrative offices to find out why a lack of bus service left some kids out in the cold.

Parent Lovie Armstrong is one of many who showed up to find out why their kids went to catch buses that never showed up.

“The parents are concerned about the transportation in the city with these children not being picked up at the bus stop. For instance these other parents that don`t have transportation, what about these pedophiles out here doing whatever picking these kids up,” said Armstrong.

The change comes after auditors discovered the state controlled district had been spending a lot of money on transportation and were not in line with state requirements. Requirements that say students must live more than 1.5 miles away from school, have dangerous crossings like railroads or major highways in their path or have special needs to get transportation. The rules went into effect last week.  The district says the sent out hundreds of letters, but some parents say they were never notified.

“More than 1,000 letters were reportedly sent back to district 189 because they did not have correct addresses on these children,” she said.

The district says they are doing what they can to work with parents to help resolve the situation and get kids back on the bus.

“The superintendent is working on it and trying to see if there is some kind of exemption that would affect East St. Louis that would give our kids more transportation. We’re just trying to find a way to make it work legally.”

The district also says they are working with principals to make sure they have updated addresses for all of their students. No word on how many students have been affected.