Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Bus Route Changes

The past two days have been much better on the bus. Monday afternoon I was so discouraged I was about ready to resign. Yesterday afternoon I refused to leave the school until the students were quiet - completely. Then I told them I expected the quiet to continue for 10 minutes - the consequence for talking or noise before that time was an additional 5 minutes added on. We ended up having a silent bus until I had only 2 stops remaining - and even then I'd told the students we were starting off this afternoon the same way. Today the silence was not quite as absolute - I did add on a total of 10 minutes before we were done. However once I was half empty the time was up and I allowed the students to talk quietly. I don't kid myself that my challenges are completely resolved but I am encouraged that I'm making progress. I did still end up escorting one student into the office this morning - I had just turned in a conduct report on him yesterday and he was breaking rules again this morning. (Probably my most absolutely strict unbreakable rule is silence at the RR tracks - until we are completely across. Just because my door is closed and I'm moving does not mean it's ok to talk or make noise yet - the silence has to continue until the radio comes back on.) If all my students ride in the afternoon I'm pushing 70 students - that's including the 4 newest riders. I would be over-full if I hadn't had 3 students transferred off.

On a different note - this weekend is fall break. We are out of school Friday and Monday. I am rather looking forward to the long weekend though our plans have changed. I had thought about going to the City for the weekend as we'd be almost half-way there as a result of Son2's tournament on Saturday. However due primarily to some unexpected expenses this week we are not going to go. Instead I am anticipating being able to get some yard work done. I would like to get my irises replanted, do some other transplanting and trim some trees. Hopefully the weather will be nice enough to allow me to work outside - I would like sunny and somewhat warm.

Last night the sunset was absolutely glorious - all reds, golds, pinks...the colors were amazing. I wished I had my camera handy to take pictures. Son1 had a Gospel Choir concert at the high school so I didn't have time to run home and grab the camera either. The concert went well I think though I could tell he was much more nervous than he is when he does special at church. I am rather hoping for something similar tonight but it's pretty overcast at the moment. Anyway...those colors make me so thankful for the beauty of God's creation. The leaves are turning - they seem to have more color this year than they did last year - that's fun.


Apple said...

It sounds like you're making progress with your crew! If you stick with it they'll come around. Your numbers are killing you. When you get over 50 kids the acoustics work double against you. I had 58-63 little ones every day last year so having less than 50 this year seems easy.

I require silence all the way across too. I'm driving a short shuttle with middle school kids (different kids every day) and we have to cross twice. I'm quite frustrated with the other drivers because I expect by this age they should already know they need to stay quiet. It seems that some of my co-workers haven't been enforcing the rule.

I hope you enjoy your long weekend! We don't have the time off here. I still have irises to plant. Sunday's my only day off this week - maybe the weather will cooperate.

Edith said...

Yup...I know the numbers are a major issue. I told my boss yesterday that if a child was going home with another child they would have to be car riders. This is the most kids I've ever had on a route.

And it is a huge frustration when drivers don't all enforce the rules - my biggest challenge in that area is students sitting down.