Question 8 of 20 for 2020 NRBOE Candidates: Universal Pre-K to 5 Busing?

Written By: Robert Cox
  1. Would you support commissioning a study to evaluate the feasibility of Universal Pre-K to 5 busing?

Adina Berrios Brooks: This is a critical issue, making sure that services support young children, and their access to schooling. I believe that the district can determine the feasibility of this change, without incurring undue expense in a period of austerity.

Katie Castellano Minaya: Our transportation system most definitely needs improvement. In fact, my daughters were amongst the children on bus 12 route last year that went through a series of different drivers over a span of a month. I had to comfort crying children on several occasions when their route was changed suddenly and they were fearful of their safety. This was not acceptable. However, I was pleased to see that the district worked to alleviate the situation. There are problems and concerns related to transportation that will not be solved overnight or with a commission, but it is a start. I would worry about funding, though, being that we are already going to be pressed for funding in our district. In terms of transportation issues, I would recommend that the district work in collaboration with families to plan for their needs. Most immediately, we need to determine what will happen with school re-entry in the fall.

Barbara D’Alois: Absolutely. Traffic concerns, environmental concerns, health issues, student safety all fold into this evaluation. Some schools, like Trinity have everyday traffic issues with double parked cars, blocked roads etc. Bussing everyone would eliminate much of the car issues and reduce emissions at the street level. This is certainly worthy of an evaluation.

Christopher Daniello:Did not answer.

Stephen A. DiDonato: Yes. There is no harm in exploring sound options.The idea of Universal bussing has a lot benefits. It addresses safety and congestion in and around the buildings. Particularly during the A.M. rush and afternoon dismissal. It also could be a part of our district wide green initiatives.

Sharon D. Footes: I would support commissioning a study to evaluate the feasibility of Universal Pre-K to 5th grade bussing if it meant the board would follow through with the recommendations.

Matthew T. Hirschman: I’m extremely supportive of Universal Pre-K but we need to see if we can afford to do so.

Michael Leone: As a Board member, one of the key roles is to make policy. More information is always better than less, especially, for making policies. Decisions should never be made on conjecture and speculation. Therefore, I will always support studies. What is more important, however, than supporting a study is acting on the results of the study. The current Board spent money on three different consultants regarding safety and security issues in our schools. The consultants conducted their own studies, drew their own conclusions, and made their own recommendations. The final reports were very similar, yet the Board has failed to follow through on these recommendations. What a waste of taxpayer money! I will not waste taxpayer money.

Timothy McKnight: Yes, I would 100% support this study. In my position at the New Rochelle Municipal Housing Authority it has been my mission to support students in anyway possible, and that includes fighting the absenteeism rate I have seen in my community. Anyway, to help our students succeed we need to look at.

Mario A. Scarano: Yes.

Julia Taylor: Transportation is a key issue in any school budget. We must examine past busing studies to inform future decisions. The study should be done in real-time and not be predictions of traffic patterns.

Donald Vega: I would say yes as a concept, but there will be a lot of work to do post-covid everyone is going to moved around and have a hectic schedule. This wouldn’t make sense right now.

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