Sunday, March 21, 2004

Mt. Healthy bus service to resume

By Cindy Kranz
The Cincinnati Enquirer

MOUNT HEALTHY - Public and private high school students in the Mount Healthy City School District will get their buses back this fall, but the district is planning other transportation cuts to save money.

"We're looking at all of our transportation districtwide," Superintendent David Horine said. "We have used probably more buses than other districts our size."

The 3,800-student district hired a consultant to examine the transportation routing system. The consultant recommended eliminating three routes.

"That will cause our entire transportation service to look a little bit different," Horine said. "We aren't going to be able to pick up as many kids at their front doors. Buses will have more kids on them."

The district would save $35,000 to $40,000 annually with fewer routes.

The school board will hear a presentation on transportation at a special meeting Monday.Mount Healthy cut high school busing in January 2003to save money after losing two operating levies the year before. A levy finally passed last November on the fifth attempt since August 2002.

"We did not make a promise to bring back high school busing, but a lot of people perceived we made that promise, and their perception becomes reality," Horine said.

"We had people calling and saying the reason they voted for this was so busing would come back. We do know it's been a hardship for students trying to get here from outlying areas. There's just no question about that. It emerged as a priority for our district."

The return of high school buses is good news for Rudy Forsberg, who has two high school students.

"We spend more money on gas to drive now," he said. "It does save money on transportation. If you have a car problem, too, you always have something to fall back on. I think it will help attendance."

If you go

The Mount Healthy Board of Education meets 4:30 p.m. Monday at the Mount Healthy Board of Education Offices, 7615 Harrison Ave., Mount Healthy.



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