The Denny International Middle School students in our photo will be coming back home this afternoon on school buses provided by Seattle Public Schools – after neighborhood residents won a hard-fought victory to get that transportation. More than 60 Denny students who live in the High Point area are technically in the school’s “walk zone” – at its northern edge – but, as discussed at a community forum with SPS officials last year, were provided with public-transit passes. But as their families and neighborhood leaders explained to the district, that still didn’t work for getting them to school on a timely basis. Tom Bishop from the SPS transportation department says he investigated, and he even discovered that Metro wouldn’t get them there in time. He and Denny principal Jeff Clark worked together, he said, and discovered that two school buses headed for Denny had extra capacity, so starting today, those buses are making stops in High Point. At one of the two stops, near the HP Neighborhood Center, they even had a mini-celebration to welcome the bus (as shown in our photo), but there was a glitch: That bus didn’t show up; it went to the wrong spot, waited several minutes, found nobody, and moved on. Bishop told WSB they’ve straightened things out and both buses will be bringing the students home this afternoon, picking them up tomorrow, etc. Overall, he says, one week after the start of school, they are still working out some of the bugs in the newly overhauled transportation plan (which has fewer buses, each making more runs, in hopes of saving money).
West Seattle, Washington