MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Transportation for Bibb County’s Magnet School Program maybe an issue for some families. With students from all over the district attending magnet schools, it’s challenging to set up bus routes.
A pilot program with buses for magnet students at Central High school is a success, so the district is looking at expanding services.
“It’s really tough for my mom to drop me off at my school because of her school, which she has to attend to,” Central High School freshman Sushrith Panda said.
Transportation is difficult for many families like the Panda’s.
“Students are coming from all over and it’s difficult to arrange logistics in transportation from all over the district into a particular hub,” Bibb County School District Chief of Staff Keith Simmons said.
The District is working to increase access to the magnet program.
“We want to do is make sure the students that have a desire to pursue fine arts, a desire to purse an international baccalaureate program, or any other magnet base, we want to make sure they have the opportunity to do that,” Simmons said.
The District recognizes not having bus access brings families to a cross roads.
“We started this pilot probably two years ago with Central High School – reestablishing transportation,” Simmons said.
With the success of the pilot program, Simmons says they’re seeing how to bring buses to other magnet schools.
“Review addresses and see where students are in relation to magnet program that they’re signing up for and then trying to navigate how many seats we project, what type of bus routes, the number of bus routes, the time of those bus routes,” Simmons said.
Panda says having a way to school is a weight off his mom’s shoulders.
“This program makes it way easier for my mom to just take me to her school and just brings me from there to here,” Panda said.
Simmons says bus transportation is a privilege.
“Quality education is the first step for leveling the playing field for the quality of life that you want for your students,” Simmons said.
Moving forward, the District is providing transportation in the fall to students attending Miller Magnet Middle School.
Simmons says they don’t have plans, at the moment, for buses to transport Vineville Academy and Alexander II students.