BPS warns of more possible school-bus problems tomorrow

BPS announced tonight the problems that plagued bus service for some students today could continue tomorrow:

Tomorrow morning we will need 175 buses, compared to about 120 today. So far, only about 110 drivers have agreed to work tomorrow.

Veolia has indicated it is working with the union to encourage the drivers to report tomorrow. Veolia is continuing to assign drivers to routes. However, we cannot guarantee service tomorrow morning.

The MBTA will be free on Tuesday for students.

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10 of the 13 buses to the

10 of the 13 buses to the school I work at were late or didn't show at all today. It's a nice gesture from the MBTA, but being able to ride the T for free isn't a solution to K-6 grade students.

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Um yeah,

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Adding 30,000 more students to the MBTA, including 4 year olds, with A BUS MONITOR is the answer..... I want to live in your reality. Not to mention, mbta routes aren't always in the right direction to the school........ Wow. I hope you don't live and vote in Boston.

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I do

Did I say that every school and student should be served in this way? Mellow out.

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I don't know

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the YMCA seems to have no problem herding their 5-12 year olds onto the T for field trips over the summer. And they run at maximum state ratio, 1 adult to 10 kids. Boys and Girls Club does the same thing.

It might not be easy or ideal, but it is possible.

This is so troubling

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The district pays so much money for this transportation service and since Violia took it over (at least in my 5 year BPS experience) it has been a nightmare. Something needs to be done to make this stop, for the price the district pays, the service should to be better.
Here's to hoping we get our BPS transportation assignment soon (nothing yet) and things go smoother tomorrow And for the rest of the school year.

City Councilors are silent on this issue

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I sent emails to several of our beloved city councilors today and pretty much got the brush off by those who responded. I was pretty disappointed that this was a non-issue for most that I contacted. I was told that this issue was being handled and given a copy of the BPS press release. When I called BPS transportation, I waited on hold for 15 minutes only to be told there was no problem and the buses were on track. The phone rep didn't even know that the morning buses had not shown up.

So many problems, so little time.

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The city councilors aren't really responsible.

But the BPS administration is. Someone should be fired this morning in the superintendents office for the bus situation, and the situation at Madison park if it is still unresolved.

The superintendent shold also have to explain publicly why they fcked up.

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I don't know...

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Maybe stop contracting to a truly abominable company like Veolia.

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It's not the company

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It's the union. Read the article, their not refusing to use their busses, the union members are refusing to show up and drive them.

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Veolia is absolutely terrible

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Veolia is absolutely terrible in their labor practices. I know there was a strike/lockout earlier in the year and I don't think the bus drivers handled that situation well at all, but if Veolia continues to violate labor laws then I don't know what else the drivers are supposed to do.

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Have an actual strike?

Why can't/won't the Steelworkers authorize a strike then? That is the standard last stand of a union labor issue, right? It's no less disruptive but it is at least done with more notice and tends to lead to at least an attempt to arbitrate the issue.

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Strike? No? Fired?

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Is the union striking? No? So they don't have the support of the union for not showing up for work? Well then I guess it's time to fire the drivers.

Then you force the union - either they'll have to strike or they'll have to attempt to defend an employee who was fired for failing to show up for work.

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MBTA is free everyday

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At least in the old days you had to put a little effort into turnstyle hopping now you can wave your hat over the sensors or squeeze behind someone and you get a free ride. The cops don't care they are too busy with their machine guns and jumpsuits trying to impress the ladies as warriors against terror to bother with fare jumpers.

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Why does the city

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tolerate such shitty attitude and service from a vendor?

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God, I miss the '80s

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How are they? Love those leg warmers. And that hair!

Boston hasn't had forced busing for awhile. But thanks for visiting; rad DeLorean you've got there.

Yeah, yeah, neighborhood schools, etc., etc. But 50% of seats in schools are assigned to kids within a mile radius, and busing for desegregation reasons stopped a long time ago. And since main BPS schools don't start until next week anyway, we're talking entirely about charter schools and special-ed programs, which are citywide and would remain so no matter what you do to local elementary schools.

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It's defacto forced busing

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It's defacto forced busing when real school choice doesn't exist for a large # of Boston families and there are too few neighborhood school seats available.

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Bus issues

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Instead of saying that the kids should ride the MBTA and we should just fire bus drivers we should be looking at the horrible treatment of the drivers. Since BPS outsourced its buses they have had nothing but trouble. They will do anything to save a buck and instead they are hurting the children that we are supposed be educating. I wish people would stop blaming the drivers. If your company negotiated a contract with a set pay and healthcare you would want them to follow through. The drivers were told that BPS would make sure the company they outsourced to would uphold the already long awaited contract, this didn't happen.

As a teacher in BPS it is our job to educate kids and want to have fair treatment. It the drivers jobs to get them to us and they also want fair treatment. I wish people would think before they post comments here.

Fair treatment?

What, specifically, are the bus drivers not getting that they should?

From the Globe:

"The union has objected to a variety of measures, including provisions that would mandate uniforms; allow the company to hold hearings on the status of employees who have been on sick leave for 12 months; and introduce language on absenteeism and tardiness that the union denounces as an attempt “to ramp up discipline,” according to a flyer the union is circulating online."

Here's that document and a quote:

http://bostonschoolbus5.org

"NO CONCESSIONS – Forward Ever, Backward Never!
Our union has a proud history of never negotiating concessions and fighting for our rights. We have demonstrated that we are prepared to strike to defend justice. Like the people in Ferguson, MO and right here at Market Basket, we will defend ourselves against injustice. Our families deserve more, not less, in return for the diligent, hard work we do, safely transporting tens of thousands of students.
From July 2013 on, Veolia has illegally implemented massive concessions – no time clocks, corrupt check-in resulting in massive chronic payroll problems, failure to convene contract committees, to name only a few."

They also repeated refer to 'SPY technology' referring to the cameras and GPS trackers. All you really need to know though is that they think having an employer try to change the terms of a job during a contract negotiation is the same as an unarmed kid getting shot by the police and a militarized police force pointing loaded weapons at protesters. And they are very specific that nothing should ever change for them unless it's an improvement. Budget issues, service issues, changing demands of the school system, technology advances - not their problem.

If they aren't getting paid for the hours they work, as was alleged last fall, that's unacceptable. This other stuff sounds like a demand for improved performance in exchange for the new contract. Tardiness and absenteeism should lead to termination of a job. Uniforms seems like a waste of everyone's time and money. And yeah, if the tax payers are paying for people who have been on sick leave for 12 months, then maybe those people should be moved off of the employee roles and onto some kind of long term disability plan.

As a parent, I would like GPS on the buses and for it to cost as little as possible so more money can be spent on the factors which actually improve the education of the kids. Ideally this done through route consolidation and the implementation of the new zones over the coming years. Being a bus driver doesn't sound like a great job, but then BPS should not be run as a jobs program - it is an education system.