‘Another one rides the bus’

Students in desperate need of an overflow bus

Illustrated by Laura Williams.

Illustrated by Laura Williams.

Groaning, the students on the bus tense their bodies and grip their belongings. Some press up against the wall, others sandwich themselves between their peers and others must hang on for dear life to the very edge of the seat. Any time the bus turns, students jostle awkwardly or even fall to the floor.

Unfortunately, many students must suffer through long, uncomfortable rides every day due to overcrowding. To ensure a comfortable and safe bus ride, the school should offer additional transportation to students.

The conditions in which some students must ride serve as potential dangers. If a student falls over into the aisle of a moving bus, they can get hurt easily. Furthermore, the chances of serious injury increase in the case of an accident. Some students need to cling to what little seat space they have in order to avoid toppling over. If the school had an extra bus where students could all sit in an actual seat, the risk of injury would decrease.

Non-bus riders assume a student can just walk or find a ride elsewhere if they do not want to face these conditions. However, students who cannot drive, live far away or whose family members cannot drive them have no other option but to ride the bus. Even if a student lives within close walking distance of the school, their parents may not want them to get there by foot for safety purposes.

Additionally, students cannot help but feel awkward sitting so close to their peers. Many teenagers feel claustrophobic when packed tightly with other people, especially strangers. This leads to anxiety and even fear of taking the bus. However, additional transportation could lessen the discomfort that many students must endure.

The district needs to invest in another bus or two; otherwise, some students will have to spend every ride to and from school packed like sardines. To earn money to buy an overflow bus, the school could hold a special fundraiser or event such as a bake sale or a carnival. By introducing more buses, schools can avoid bus overcrowding and make the journey to school and back much easier for bus riders.