McEachron Elementary Parents Seek Bus Stop for Safety Concerns

By: Rae Chelle Davis Email
By: Rae Chelle Davis Email

Heading back to school is a pleasant experience for most families. But for several Topeka parents getting their kids back to school has become an uphill battle.

For parents who live south of 470 off of 29th and Fairlawn their children must cross a busy intersection and highway ramps with no signals or signs to get to McEachron Elementary.

"It's hard. It's hard getting four kids ready for anything," says Emily Piland. Piland has a 5th grader and a Kindergartner but her six-month-old baby and her toddler must tag along to school as well. The Pilands walk a mile and a quarter to get to school and back each day.

"My husband goes out of town a lot for work and it's kind of hard when you have one vehicle,"said Piland. But it's not so much the walking that is the issue. It is where they are walking. "The only way to get to school from where I live is to walk down Fairlawn and down 29th St. due to 470 cutting in between," said Piland.

"The traffic is really busy with school and kids and people going to work. It's not safe at all. There used to be a bus provided but they took that away," said Lisa Kraus who walks five children to school.

USD 501 has a bus safety committee who will take a look at the issue at their meeting next Wednesday at 9:30a.m. The moms also plan to speak at the school board meeting on Thursday.

Ron Harbaugh is the Communications Director for USD 501. He says the state says schools must bus students if they live more than two and a half miles from school. 501 buses students who live two miles or more away from school. He says the district will consider the request but parents have to understand that busing kids requires funding.


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