Hoover City Schools consult with DOJ on fee-based bus service

Source: WBRC video
Source: WBRC video

HOOVER, AL (WBRC) - Hoover City School's Board of Education has decided to keep bus service but it may hit parents in their pocketbooks. The school system is considering charging a fee to ride the bus.

It's a controversial idea across the country. A study by the Florida legislature shows 12 states allow the fees and one state, Hawaii, mandates it.

Palm Beach, Fla. looked at charging students $2.59 a day. Jefferson County, Colo. asked students to pay $150 a year.

"I'm not a fan of fees for public education for essential services. If you are participating in band or football these are extras. I think it's okay to charge parents," Trisha Crain, Hoover parent, said.

Crain has had children in the Hoover school system and she worked to with other parents to save the Hoover bus service. Crain said there are alternatives to forcing parents to pay for bus service.

"When you take a service the school district has always offered and now you are going to start charging for it that puts a burden on families they didn't expect," Crain said.

Crain is encouraged by Superintendent Andy Craig contacting the U.S. Justice Department about the fee issue. She believes this will lead to reasonable recommendations.

Meanwhile, on Good Day Alabama, school bus advocate Robin Shultz said the big issue that remains the school system's deficit.

"The school buses are just an issue but it doesn't address the whole problem. We are facing a $17 million deficit and that needs to be resolved," Shultz said.

Shultz and Crain both advocate parents staying involved in working with the school board to solve the money problem.

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