Below find a DRAFT letter to TRI/RDS, Inc. (the bus company) concerning the incidents mentioned in the last board meeting. I have included Ed Drapp as a CC. Please comment freely (should this letter be signed by the complete board, just myself, just Mike??) and I will bring final copy with corrections/modifications to the meeting on Thursday. Kent MORETOWN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL Board of School Directors RR 1, Box 640 Moretown, VT 05660 March 22, 1999 Richard S. Daniels –President TRI/RSD, Inc. 128 South Main Street West Lebanon, N.H. 03784 Dear Mr. Daniels, During the week of March 1, 1999 several incidents occurred on your buses that is of grave concern to the Moretown Elementary School Board of Directors. The incidents are: a.. A child was removed from a bus by someone other than their parent (and without the parent’s knowledge), when the bus was in the middle of its route. a.. When the parent of the above child called Mrs. Barone (Principle of Moretown Elementary School) asking where her child was, Mrs. Baron could not contact the bus because Ms. Susan Swenson was driving a bus and was not available to man the radio. a.. Two children were dropped over one mile from their bus stop and had to walk home. Based upon TRI/RSD, Inc.’s contract with Washington West Supervisory Union of Waitsfield, TRI/RSD is required to do the following: "The Carrier agrees that during the entire term of the Contract it will be responsible for the safety, welfare, conduct and control of the students during the period of transportation" (Article 11. RULES AND REGULATIONS FOR SCHOOL TRANSPORTATION). "The Carrier shall install and maintain two-way radio stations in all buses…to maintain communications between buses and control unit in the terminal office and the shcools when any situation demands this service. The terminal office shall be manned at all times during a.m., p.m., and kindergarten routes (Article 19. COMMUNICATIONS). I have spoken with Susan Swenson at the bus barn and she was very helpful in explaining the reasons why the above events occurred. The fact of the matter is that these type of situations should never occur. It is TRI/RSD, Inc.'s responsibility to ensure that there are adequate numbers of drivers and substitute drivers. It is TRI/RSD’s responsibility to ensure that the bus drivers have proper procedures for dropping children at their specific bus stops and for removal of a child from a bus. It is unacceptable to have children walking home over a mile from their bus stop (even if a child says it is okay, the driver must get that child to the correct bus stop safely), children removed from a bus without proper authorization and for the radio to be unmanned. If a driver is unsure what to do, he/she can call on the radio (this is one reason why the radio must be manned during pick-ups and drop offs) to get clarification on procedures if necessary. It is TRI/RSD’s responsibility to insure the safety and well being of the children it transports on its buses. I have a copy of the "rules" that the bus drivers are to follow and it clearly states "After picking up students at the school (s) they are to be dropped off at the appropriate school bus stop." These "rules" do not address removing a student from the bus by an adult other than a parent and they need to be amended to address this issue. The Moretown School Board of Directors are deeply concerned about the safety of the children that ride your buses and would like you to address these issues and insure that they do not happen in the future. Sincerely, Kent Holden Moretown School Director – Clerk CC: Mr. Ed Drapp – Washington West Supervisory Union Ms. Susan Swenson – TRI/RSD, Inc. Mr. Brian Hemenway – Bus Manager TRI/RSD, Inc.