View Poll Results: Should I let my 4 year old daughter ride the bus?
You're wacky - let the girl ride the bus! 21 12.50%
It's okay mama, driving her to school is acceptable 147 87.50%
Voters: 168. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 05-30-2012, 07:40 PM   #81
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Re: Poll: Am I a terrible, mean mother?

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Originally Posted by TooBusyBearcubs View Post
The way I see it, if a teacher finds it challenging to keep 25 students, who are sitting behind desks (or tables) with work to do, and all within the same age, from being well-behaved for a 20 minute lesson...
...then there is NO WAY I can realistically expect a school bus driver, whose back is constantly to the kids, to maintain control over 30+ children, who are not strapped in, do not have anything useful to do, and are all different ages...and many of them are on the bus for a looooong time = boredom.
Nope, I appreciate the job that bus drivers do (my uncle is one), but I am not a fan of school buses.
Oh, yeah...and like maddys_mama said - the driver is ideally supposed to be paying attention to the road. How can I expect him to monitor everything those kids are doing?
So you think that all of the millions of children who ride the bus every day, that none of the bus drivers driving all of these kids around are in control? This seems a little naive. I can tell you that for the past 180 days of school for the last 3 years twice a day when the bus came to pick up my kids and drop them off that the bus driver was in complete control. All of the kids were sitting and chatting. That seems pretty normal to me.

Yes they are paying attention to the road. It is the kids' responsiblity to do what they are supposed to. If they don't THEY are to blame and their parents for doing a poor job of teaching them manners and proper behavior.

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Old 05-30-2012, 07:53 PM   #82
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Re: Poll: Am I a terrible, mean mother?

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I would probably be okay with sending her when she's 6.5 if she wants to go on it. She'll have more "life experience" by then and will be more comfortable being on her own and aware of what to do if soemthing happens.
Do you really think she will have more "life experience" between 4 and 6.5 to be "ok" to ride the bus in your mind? Why not teach her how to be comfortable on her own now and aware of what to do if something happened now? She still will be in the school with other classmates and older kids. Just b/c she isn't on the bus doesn't mean she won't be exposed to things in school and with other kids.

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That's my biggest fear, is the bullying and teasing. Even if it's not directed at her, I just worry about stuff like that.
Why not teach her what it is and why people do it. Prepare her for it and how to handle it. Again, just b/c she isn't on the bus doesn't mean she won't be exposed to it.

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I'm not worried about her staying ON the bus, I'm worried about her getting off at the wrong stop. This happened to my friend - they had a sub driver and her daughter (5) got off at the wrong stop, and no one knew it. I actually can't sleep at night sometimes when I think about her little daughter wandering around a strange neighborhood by herself OMG, if that happened to me, I would need long-term medication!
I would think she would know where her stop is. I don't know the story about the other girl you mentioned. Maybe she wanted to go to a friends house and got off with a friend. You just have to tell her that she is only allowed to get off at HER bus stop. Both of my 5 year olds never got off at the wrong stop.

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The safety thing is really last on my list of concerns. I know buses are safe. My thing with that though is that she's always been in a harness, so she's not used to having free reign to get out of her seat, LOL. Who knows what would happen once she realizes she can actually get out.
Believe me, she will realize she still has to sit down. The bus driver will stop the bus if all kids are not sitting down. All of the K kids on DD2's bus are all either harnessed or in a booster and they all sit down. Sometimes the bus driver has to remind them or stop the bus, but it was less and less as the year went on.
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Old 05-30-2012, 07:53 PM   #83
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Re: Poll: Am I a terrible, mean mother?

Don't put her on the bus so young! You are not crazy for wanting to drive her, at all. I was pressured by family to "start my son on the bus" and he was choked by an older kid to the point of turning blue and he didn't tell me for weeks. His behavior changed, he started sucking on his shirts, having accidents and I didn't know what was wrong.

ETA: I was also bullied on the bus, daily and my mom made me keep riding it. There was a group of sisters who hated me. (they actually hated everyone). One of the sisters bit me on the arm when I was 15 and I had to get a tetanus shot and an antibiotic shot. She drew blood.
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Old 05-30-2012, 07:54 PM   #84
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Re: Poll: Am I a terrible, mean mother?

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Really? I'm crazy to put my children in a vehicle that is safer than driving them in my car? I don't understand what is crazy about allowing a child to ride a bus.

My children are safe. They have a great time with friends. I don't really get the worry about the older kids - generally the really little ones are up front while the oldest are in the back. They don't mingle a whole lot and I don't know of any problems at all between the 8th graders and the kindergarteners on our bus. The biggest likelihood of problems are from the child's peers. And, you are going to have those same issues on the playground and at lunchtime.

It isn't crazy to not be overprotective.
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Old 05-30-2012, 07:55 PM   #85
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The bus here doesn't drop kids off until 4:15. That would put ds on the bus for an hour and a half. We lived in the country growing up, and my mom drove me for the same reason. A 7 hour school day is already so long for a little one, I would feel like a heel tacking an hour and a half to that.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:02 PM   #86
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Re: Poll: Am I a terrible, mean mother?

I don't think it's crazy, if my kids went to school I would drive them. Something about a large group of children I do not know does not sit well with me. I bet a lot of the time it turns out to be a good experience and there is nothing wrong with it...sometimes you hear about the awful things that happen on buses. If the bus works for your family and you've had nothing but good experiences, then awesome! Sometimes it doesn't always work out that way though, I'd rather just avoid a possible bad outcome.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:11 PM   #87
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Re: Poll: Am I a terrible, mean mother?

I don't think there's anything wrong with the bus in general, but, at 4 years old, I think it would be best not to put her on the bus without good preparation. I was put on the bus at that age, and there were a couple of stressful experiences missing my bus stop and getting yelled at by the bus driver & laughed at by older kids. After that, I learned to watch REALLY closely.
I think driving her to school for a while, then driving the bus route (maybe even behind the bus), and teaching her what to look for on the way would be good. Maybe she could transition to just taking the bus one way sometimes before going on the bus all the time.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:16 PM   #88
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Re: Poll: Am I a terrible, mean mother?

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I don't think it's crazy, if my kids went to school I would drive them. Something about a large group of children I do not know does not sit well with me. I bet a lot of the time it turns out to be a good experience and there is nothing wrong with it...sometimes you hear about the awful things that happen on buses. If the bus works for your family and you've had nothing but good experiences, then awesome! Sometimes it doesn't always work out that way though, I'd rather just avoid a possible bad outcome.
What about the classroom and school? That is also a large group of children you don't know.

Yes, you always hear about the bad bus experiences. Most likely, nothing bad si going to happen. If it does it is like any life experience, you do something about it and learn from it.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:21 PM   #89
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Re: Poll: Am I a terrible, mean mother?

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So you think that all of the millions of children who ride the bus every day, that none of the bus drivers driving all of these kids around are in control? This seems a little naive. I can tell you that for the past 180 days of school for the last 3 years twice a day when the bus came to pick up my kids and drop them off that the bus driver was in complete control. All of the kids were sitting and chatting. That seems pretty normal to me.

Yes they are paying attention to the road. It is the kids' responsiblity to do what they are supposed to. If they don't THEY are to blame and their parents for doing a poor job of teaching them manners and proper behavior.
You must have a great bus driver. Ours actually told me that there was no way he could watch everyone and he couldn't stop the bullying or sit my son next to him to help stop it. I have heard this same story over and over again. It IS different than the school/classroom setting and the school doesn't do anything about bus behavior. Kids are able to do as they wish, basically. If any of my kids ever go back to public school, there is no way they will ride the bus.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:51 PM   #90
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Re: Poll: Am I a terrible, mean mother?

In the district I teach in...if the kids step one toe out of line on the bus, they are banned for awhile, and a second offense gets them banned for the year. Kids all have assigned seats with their names over them. We don't play around with bus safety. The bus is a privilege, not a right.
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