Decatur Schools Looking to Lease Their Own Buses, End Relationship with DeKalb

On the agenda for tonight’s City Schools of Decatur School Board meeting, buses!

According to a note to the Board submitted by Superintendent Phyllis Edwards, as the system has grown, CSD’s “specific [busing] needs have changed, including concerns such as the quantity of breakdowns and safety, which may be ameliorated by newer buses”.

As such, the system had asked for a list of bids from three bus companies, Blue Bird, Thomas and Rush.  Of the three, Rush had the lowest interest rate and annual cost.

Tonight, the School Board is scheduled to vote on the lease agreement.  If approved, the CSD is scheduled to launch the new fleet of 10 buses in time for the new school year in the fall. These will join four buses already purchased by Decatur over the years through the state bus program.

CSD Starts a Bus Updates “Blog” on Its Website

CSD sent out this email last night…

An exciting new feature is available for families that are interested in seeing real-time bus updates. A webpage has been established on the CSD website that will be updated from the field.

A post will be made on this page if a bus is expected to be 15 or more minutes late.

To access: go to click on News Room> Bus Updates.

Families that use RSS feeds can include this page in their RSS reader.

Here’s the RSS reader link if you’re lookin’ for it.

Superintendent Addresses Bus Concerns

Superintendent Phyllis Edwards sent this letter out to the Decatur community last night…

Dear Families:

The City Schools of Decatur is happy to provide transportation service for your children. Approximately 40% of our students ride the bus to or from school.

We have experienced some unavoidable issues this year, such as a shortage in certified school bus drivers. We have temporarily collapsed some routes, causing timetable adjustments.

Transportation is not an easy school system service. While we strive for all students to travel without incident, any number of situations could exist concurrently: a traffic jam or auto accident, a student who boarded the wrong bus, a driver not reporting to work due to illness.

On Wednesday, October 12, 2011, I met with Principals and Ms. Simone Elder, Transportation Director, to discuss bus service concerns. I offer these concerns below, some that will require your assistance, others that require action on our part over the next few months.

Volunteers from the central office and schools recently riding the bus routes have surfaced the following information:

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