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Public outcry prompts tweak of county school bus plan

Following a public outcry from disgruntled parents and guardians, Halifax County Public School administrators have decided to revise the newly implemented transportation plan.

The transportation plan was unveiled last week during the Halifax County School Board meeting.

According to Superintendent Dr. Merle Herndon, the decision to change the plan was made following a staff meeting Monday when county school administrators agreed the original transportation plan was a little “too rigid.” 

The plan, as presented at the school board meeting, didn’t provide all the necessary information, the superintendent said it was later realized.

A newly revised form now includes “options” and a schedule that will be filled out by the parent or guardian detailing locations where the student will get on and off the bus/car each morning and afternoon Monday through Friday.

The clarification of the new transportation plan can be found on the school’s website and reads as follows: “The primary goal for Halifax County Public Schools is the safety of our students. In an effort to further explain changes to the new transportation plan, a copy of the form has been posted on the Halifax County Public Schools’ website. In addition to the form, the following information will assist in understanding the new transportation plan.

There is flexibility to address household schedules.

 All parents or guardians will need to have a transportation plan on file in the school’s office. Parents may print and complete the transportation form and bring it to open house, or it may be completed at open house.

 The requirement for a parent or guardian to come to the school to change the plan only applies if the change is for an extended period of time.

 In case of emergency, phone calls will be accepted on an individual basis. Callers will be required to give the password that is determined by the parent and is included on the transportation plan.

 It is the responsibility of the parent or guardian to arrange for a person of their choice to meet the bus or pick up the child at school if no one will be at the address listed on the transportation plan.

 Parents can call or come by the school’s main office for help with completing the transportation plan form.”

Herndon said parents are asked to complete the transportation plan before school starts, and if they are not able to attend open house, parents can mail the transportation plan to the school.

The clarifications were discussed Monday with two of the county’s largest school’s principals, Cluster Springs Elementary School Principal Lisa Long and South Boston Elementary School Principal Sue Bagbey. Also participating in the discussion was elementary advisor Scottsburg Elementary School Principal Catherine Glass. 

“We have to get away from making a change every day,” said Herndon. 

Parents will establish a password to be used for emergency phone calls and to check out students. 

“We hadn’t used the system with passwords before, but in this day and is about safety,” she added.

A copy of the new transportation plan can be printed from the Halifax County Public Schools website at