New School District 51 Bus Routes Tested On First Day of School
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.- School District 51 officials breathed a sigh of relief Monday morning as buses picked up and dropped off students without incident.
After dealing with a summer of budget cuts, the school district now has 16 fewer bus routes than they did last year.
Students living within a two-mile radius of their school must find an alternate means of transportation, whether that means getting a ride from mom or dad or walking.
"As the year goes on, especially this week, there's going to be a lot of parents taking kids to school. Once next week starts, I think that we'll start to see more students riding the bus and there will be less congestion at the schools," said Tim Leon, safety director for School District 51.
School District 51 has been working with local law enforcement to help ensure the safety of students in school zones and those walking to school.
"We asked them to help and they've responded tremendously. I know there were a lot of officers out in school zones this morning," said Leon.
Grand Junction police officials issued four speeding tickets in a single school zone Monday near Nisley Elementary, while the Mesa County Sheriff's Office issued six tickets. Two were issued Monday morning near Broadway Elementary.
"Now that school is back in session we will continue to patrol school zones on a regular basis," said Kate Porras with the Grand Junction Police Department.
Although it's still a long way away, School District 51 administrators say they are hopeful that next year, the eliminated bus routes will return. "If we get the funding next year, it's a possibility they would come back, but I can't say for sure. It's depending on the budget."
Officials are asking drivers to slow down and pay extra attention to students.