Local News

Classes Are Back In Session For Triangle Area Students

Posted August 13, 2001

— School bells rang Monday morning for thousands of students in the Triangle and beyond.

Traditional schools in Wake, Johnston, Nash-Rocky Mount, and Orange counties begin the school year Monday. Schools in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro district start next Monday. Classes in Chatham and Cumberland counties start a week from Tuesday.

As many as 53,000 Wake County students will be riding the bus when they head back to school Monday. Wake County's bus system is big and complicated, but administrators are trying to make sure things run smoothly.

Wake County schools new transportation director says do not be surprised if your child's bus is running a little behind schedule the first few days of the new school year . Although drivers spent the past week making practice runs, there are always last-minute adjustments.

This summer Wake county added something new to their buses-- Nextel radios. All 713 buses will have them, giving supervisors instant contact with drivers in case of emergencies. Drivers can also call 911.

Jerry Lovick has been driving school buses for 19 years and says the phones are "really the best thing they've had on buses for a long time."

The Nextel upgrade will cost about $136,000 a year. Wake County did away with bag phones it put in buses two years ago because they were unreliable and expensive to fix.

Some helpful hints for parents this year include:

  • Waiting at the bus stop with students.
  • Tell your child not to approach the bus until it stops.
  • Students should immediately step away from the bus when they get off.
  • Students should not chase after a bus once it has pulled away.
  • Buses may also be a little late dropping students off Monday afternoon. It typically takes about two weeks to work out all the kinks. If you have any questions this morning regarding buses in Wake County, call

    856-8050

    . Also keep in mind that 22 schools have

    new bell schedules

    this year.

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