Thursday, October 11, 2007

You have GOT to be kidding me!

Did you read in the Funny paper today that the State Department of Education actually forced a charter bus taking the Pendleton High School soccer team to a game in Redmond to pull over and wait for a yellow school bus to come get them and take them to the game.


Well, it seems, those big, comfortable charter coaches don’t meet the “standards” the state has for busses carrying schoolkids. Much better, for a three hour trip, to have the athletes sit in those horribly uncomfortable school bus seats. Never mind that millions of people are driven all over the country in coaches. They don’t comply with some bureaucrat’s regulation as to “window retention, roof strength, joint strength and durable seating.”

So now, when Sheldon has to travel down to South Medford for a football game, it has to endure the 2 ½ hour one way trip it in a yellow school bus. Great way to get loose for a ball game.

And here is what the state transportation bureaucrat said about it: "There's no legal authority to use those buses," said Deborah Lincoln, the director of pupil transportation for the Department of Education.

Wow. Do they take workshops in officiousness? Notice how she stated that – it reveals the perfect command and control bureaucrat mindset. It is the district that doesn’t have the legal authority to do something unless the state says it is OK. In a free society, the relationship is exactly the reverse – we are free to act as we wish unless there is some enumerated restriction on that action.

So now our local school officials are not competent to decide how to get kids to ballgames. If that is really true, why would we trust them with far more important tasks, such as teaching our kids?

It gets even better. The rules say that a district that is out of compliance with these rules has twelve months to get a plan in place to get back in compliance! A PLAN??

Bureaucrats love this kind of stuff because for them, it is job security. They monitor the plan’s development, offer assistance, then review and approve the plan, then monitor its execution. Can you imagine what a plan to stop using non-compliant busses would look like?

And of course, what would an issue like this be without the other tried and true tactic of bureaucrats everywhere: a committee. The state has appointed a 15-member “work group” to look into these bus regulations and propose “solutions,” that can be presented to the State Board of Education.

How about this: get rid of the stupid rules. That’s my plan.


panchopdx said...

If the kids start using charter busses how long before they start experimenting with charter schools?

It's a slippery slope.

OregonGuy said...

Charter busses. Gateway transportation.

And you'll never know where you'll end up.

Rob Kremer said...

You guys crack me up!

Anonymous said...

Rob, Somehow I knew you would comment on this. This is so ridiculous and it won't only affect sports teams. I have a middle schooler in Band and Choir. Guess what? They use charter busses as well. Last year they had to use one to tour local elementary schools because there was a severe shortage of bus drivers.

There is no problem, why are they seeking a solution? This stinks to me. Stinks like someone doesn't like the school districts paying private companies for transportation.

db lulu

Anonymous said...


As somebody who was on a school board, I have followed Susan Castillo's idiot antics for a couple of years.

Here is her list of recent screw ups:
-the bus fiasco
-the testing vendor fiasco
-the school reportcard grade fiasco
-the $800K Bethel fiasco where the homeschool & alt school program was deemed illegal because the Bethel district got signed forms from the transfering out dist, but Bethel did not sign their own forms
-the multi million Baker Union fiasco
-the $1.2M Sisters fiasco
-the revolving door of staff defections at ODE

And to think that Susan wants to run for Gov!! She is runnning the worst dept in one of the worst run States in America. Her only qualification is that she has a hispanic surname, so she'll win in a landslide!

Anonymous said...

Do yellow school bus drivers belong to the Union? Do they receive PERS benefits? Fully paid health care premiums?

If so, that would explain the dust-up.

Anonymous said...

Yes, school bus drivers belong to a union, yes they recieve benefits. What they should be looking into is the no-bid purchasing and obscene kickbacks and pricing of new school buses. The company that is "in" with the transportation department can and does charge as much as they want. NOW THAT IS A WASTE OF TAXPAYERS MONEY.

That is what should be looked into. I believe that it all ties into the charter issue.

It's a shame!!