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MISD Purchases Activity Buses

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MISD has purchased activity buses for the 2017-201 school year. These buses are safer and more comfortable then regular school buses, and will be available for student group usage for long trips. Creative Commons.

MISD has purchased activity buses for the 2017-201 school year. These buses are safer and more comfortable then regular school buses, and will be available for student group usage for long trips. Creative Commons.

The district has ordered 12 activity buses for student to use in the upcoming 2017-2018 school year. These 42-seaters will provide an alternative mode of transportation for sports teams, organizations, and student groups who would otherwise be forced to travel long distances in a yellow-dog school bus. Assistant Superintendent of Student Services David Wright leads the committees in charge of acquiring and decorating the new buses.

“[The buses] are activity buses, between a charter and a school bus,” Wright said. “The reason there’s 12, is, let’s say, Legacy’s football team is in the playoffs. It will take about 12 buses to get the football team, band, cheerleaders, drill team, to where they were going.”

One of the chief problems that the district is seeking to fix is the discomfort associated with traveling long distances on regular school buses. The activity buses will feature comfortable, high-back seats and USB ports to charge devices, reminiscent of a charter bus. Junior Ryan King traveled with the band to San Antonio on a regular school bus, and attests to the discomfort.

“[The trip] was long, cramped and very uncomfortable. It hurt to walk afterwards,” King said. “I like the fact that they invested some money into getting new buses.”

Activity buses also provide a heightened level of safety that regular school buses lack. Besides lacking seat belts, school buses cannot drive the speed limit on the highway. Wright and the district feel that for long trips that require a large amount of interstate time, a bus that can actually go the speed limit would be much safer for students.

“They have bigger engines, so they can go the speed limit,” Wright said. “We feel like it’s a little bit safer to to drive the limit on the highway.”

Due to a change in the district’s fiscal year, extra funds were available. About a third of the excess money was devoted to the activity buses, and there are also plans to build an early childhood center with another chunk of the cash.

“There’s really no drawbacks to it,” Wright said. “We had some funds available, and one of the things that the district wanted was to purchase these activity buses for safety and comfort.”

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