Motorists should expect increased traffic when school starts Monday
By REBECCA LEFTWICH
Monday marks the first day of school for students in the Coweta County School System, and local drivers should expect a higher volume of traffic on Coweta roads as a result.
School hours are as follows:
Middle schools: 8:20 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
High schools: 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Central Educational Center: 8:15-11:05 a.m. and 12:30-3:10 p.m.
Coweta’s school system provides the option of bus service to all students in the mornings and afternoons. In all, Coweta school buses transport about 13,800 of Coweta County’s 23,000 students each day, covering about 12,000 miles daily. Students who choose to take advantage of bus services should arrive at their designated bus stops by 6:55 a.m. during the first week of school.
Regular morning pick-up times will become predictable as routes are established in the new year, but students and parents should be prepared for a longer wait in the beginning days.
School officials ask families to be patient as the system’s transportation department addresses enrollment and bus ridership increases over the first few weeks of school, which can cause problems such as crowding on some buses, double bus routes and route changes.
Carpoolers can expect longer lines for student drop-off on the first days and should plan accordingly, school officials warn. Every school has separate drop-off areas for bus traffic and car traffic, and drivers should be extremely careful to stay away from bus zones on the first days of school.
School system Transportation Manager Judy Gresham offered the following safety reminders:
• Everyone has a responsibility for school bus safety.
• The most dangerous time for children who ride school buses is when they are loading and unloading on the road.
• Expect the unexpected – slow down, stay alert and be prepared to stop quickly around school buses and in school zones.
• All motorists must watch for buses on the road, and all must stop when the school bus loads or unloads students and signals for traffic to stop.
• Remind students when crossing the street to stop and look for cars and trucks and look to their bus drivers for clearance.
• Make sure your child’s teacher is made aware of his mode of transportation and his destination in the afternoon.
• Accompany very young children to the bus stop, and meet them on their return.
For school bus pick-up sites and other information, call the transportation department at 770-254-2820.
Representatives also will be on hand on the first day of school to address concerns and provide further information regarding bus service.