The New York City schools chancellor Dennis Walcott is suggesting parents ofÂ 152,000 students to find alternative ways to get to class due to the threateningÂ a school bus strike.
Officials of Local 1181 of the Amalgamated Transit Union say they’re tryingÂ to avert a strike, but school officials are taking the necessary steps. The cityÂ is offering reimbursements and Metrocards to parents who would needÂ transportation alternatives.
If they’re younger, a parent or guardian also would get a MetroCard to escortÂ a child. And in the case of special needs children, families would getÂ reimbursed for non-public transportation.
The children who use the yellow school buses include 54,000 withÂ disabilities, the chancellor said, and the “union should stop playing games,Â issuing threats of striking” – but not saying which day it might happen.
“The union has said, ‘Well, maybe on Monday, well maybe Wednesday, maybeÂ we’ll do it, maybe we won’t do it.’ They’re jerking our kids around,” WalcottÂ said. “We can’t allow that to happen.”
The city is looking to cut transportation costs and has put bus contracts upÂ for a bid. The union is contesting the lack of employee protections saying manyÂ current drivers could suddenly lose their jobs once their contracts are up inÂ June.
A strike would impact all students who use the buses, including parochial andÂ private schools.
New York City has 1.1 million students in its school district.
Source: Fox 5 NY