WESTON, Fla. – Students at Falcon Cove Middle School are getting home later and later. The problem is being caused because school buses aren’t being allowed to turn left.
Parents are frustrated, saying it is taking almost double the time for their children to arrive home and they are demanding something be done.
“My kids are spending about an hour and a half on the bus, every day, round trip,” said Jennifer Jimenez.
Jimenez is just one of many Falcon Cove Middle School parents who are frustrated because of the time it takes for their kids to get home from school.
“My other daughter has to be at ballet at 5 p.m. If I waited for her to get here on the bus, we’d never make it,” Jimenez said.
Local 10 spoke with several parents who said the issue started a few weeks ago.
It began with a new bussing pattern at the school which is preventing drivers from turning left on Bonaventure Boulevard.
The buses are forced to turn right to Griffin Road and then drive west to US-27 or east to Weston Road, before they can head north for drop-offs.
For Jimenez’s kids, what usually would be a 25-minute drive, is now closer to an hour, with traffic.
“For me, it’s inconceivable that my kids should sit on a bus for 50 minutes after they’ve had a long day at school. They’re hungry, they’re tired, it’s hot,” Jimenez said.
Other parents on social media voiced similar concerns, saying they were being forced to pick their children up to make sure they don’t miss after-school activities.
The school’s principal has voiced his frustration, emailing parents to apologize and saying: “I want to assure all of you that I am working with these entities and voicing your concerns, and mine that not allowing the busses to turn left is causing undue stress on our families.”
Despite the principal’s protests, he says the district’s transportation department told him that making a left turn is unsafe.
He was also told that the Broward Sheriff’s Office doesn’t have the manpower to control traffic at the location every day. The only choice is for drivers to turn right.
Local 10 received the following statement from the school district:
“While Broward County Public Schools understands the frustration and inconvenience being experienced by the Falcon Cove Middle School community, the safety of our students is and will always be the main priority. The District asks for families’ patience during the last couple of weeks of school while District, school, and city officials evaluate possible solutions.”