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A Different Ride: APS Changes Bus Policy

Smoother+Ride%3A+A+change+in+APS+bus+policy+for+the+new+school+year+means+fewer+stops+--+and+no+more+guests+on+busses.+%0A
Smoother Ride: A change in APS bus policy for the new school year means fewer stops -- and no more guests on busses.

Smoother Ride: A change in APS bus policy for the new school year means fewer stops -- and no more guests on busses.

Bethany Creaven

Bethany Creaven

Smoother Ride: A change in APS bus policy for the new school year means fewer stops -- and no more guests on busses.

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Riding the bus home with a friend after school is one of the best ways to let off steam after a long and stressful day at school. This year Atlanta Public Schools will enforce a new bus policy that requires students to only ride the bus assigned to them based on their address. This means no longer riding the bus home with friends, to multiple parents houses, or to an after-school job.

In the past, students have been allowed to ride the bus home with friends or for other reasons, provided they had a note from a parent establishing this as permissible. Starting this school year, students can no longer ride any other bus besides their own even if they have parent permission. Some students are complaining that this new policy hurts those who have parents who live separately or for those who make rides to after-school programs.

Prior to the policy change, there were many students appreciated the fact that they could go to a friend’s house after a long day of school. Now students must either get a ride from their parents or Uber to a friend’s house to hang out. “People with parents out of town who are staying with a friend have to spend money on Uber and that takes a lot of time,” said junior Josh Brown.  

While there have been some who’ve complained, other students have  appreciated the net effects of the new policy change. There’s a new calmness, they say, on bus rides home without all the extra riders. “All in all it’s a good change,” said junior Ishmael Massar. “Last year my bus could get pretty crowded and now it’s not that way.”

Bus drivers also agree with this policy as it is helpful for them to keep track of who they are dropping off where and also makes sure everybody gets off where they are supposed to. Not only is this rule for safety, but the policy change will mean all students on the bus will get home more quickly. “As far as I’m concerned I agree with people not being able to ride home with friends,” said bus driver Tajuana Flournoy.

Although this plan feels unnecessary to some students, APS believes it is important and can help to keep the bus and transportation system safe and secure. From now on, both bus riders and drivers can enjoy the less crowded environment on the ride home and make sure to plan ahead when making after-school plans with friends.

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A Different Ride: APS Changes Bus Policy