Some Coatesville School District parents outraged over proposed school busing plan

COATESVILLE, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Coatesville School District sent out a letter last week detailing how private, public and charter school students would be bused to class. It was supposed to go into effect Monday, but some parents were outraged at the letter, saying "social distancing may not occur."

"I was scared for the safety of my kids, but also every other kid that's in the district. I was angry that the district is not following the outlines guided by the CDC," said Melissa Ash of Downingtown.

Ash has two sons in private school at St. Joseph School, which has been doing in-person learning since September.

Under the proposed bus structure, which the district stated is about saving an estimated $750,000, children from all schools would be taken to a HUB and have to be on two buses to get to school. This decision was made before the pandemic, but never went into effect, given public schools remained virtual this week instead of going back to the classroom.

"I want to keep the number of kids my son is exposed to a minimum," Ash said.

Some parents say it's simply a public safety matter and say the district has yet to provide answers.

"Our school has created cohorts for our kids, to keep kids all separated, so we lessen the chance of spreading COVID-19. It's not about private school versus public," Ashley Shattuck said.

The district issued a statement that says in part, "The district is deeply sorry for this operational failure. We understand the anger and frustration, and we are working around the clock with additional support to rectify this issue as soon as possible."

But some parents remain skeptical.

"Yesterday the buses didn't even pick up the kids from our school at all," Shattuck said.

There is a school board meeting scheduled for Tuesday.

The district is not shying away from the fact that it made a mistake and they are working hard to fix it.
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