Lee County Schools
Bus stop backlash for Cape Royal students?
Two weeks after Fox 4, Don Armstrong did 2.1 mile bus stop walk, parents fear retaliation
Than two mile walk to the bus stop have a new concern tonight. Four in your corner's matt grant live at district headquarters with an update. Video by fox4now.comvideo
LEE COUNTY - Children in one Cape Coral golf community facing more than 2-mile walk to the bus stop now have a new concern.
Two weeks ago, school board member Don Armstrong and Fox 4 reporter Matt Grant walked 2.1 miles to see firsthand how far some kids at Cape Royal have to walk to catch the bus.
Now, two weeks later, some parents say nothing has changed, and for some, it's gotten worse.
At least two high school students have had their bus times moved an hour earlier to 5:45 a.m., according to parents.
That means the kids have to start walking at 5 a.m., in the dark, in order to make the 2 mile walk to the bus stop at the front of the gated community.
On top of that, their bus ride time has doubled. Two parents tell Fox 4 their kids have to sit on the bus for 1.5 hours to get to a school 15 minutes away.
It's important to remember these bus route changes are being made in an effort to cut back on long school bus rides. This comes on the heels of last year's transportation audit sparked by a series of Fox 4 investigations into long bus rides.
After speaking out at last week's school board meeting, some parents at Cape Royal now feel they are being retaliated against.
“As a parent yeah, I'd be thinking the same thing, I really would," said Armstrong, when asked if this appears to be retaliation.
Armstrong said he does not believe the district would retaliate but called the change "strange" and promised to investigate why the change was made.
"I think it's something we need to look into," he said, "and ask why?"
The district tells Fox 4 they are also looking into the bus stop change. In a statement, they deny any allegations of a backlash.
"No retaliation is being done," said district spokesperson Joe Donzelli in a statement. "And any hint or implication otherwise is inappropriate."
The bus route changes were made as part of an effort to cut back on long school bus rides.
MATT GRANT, REPORTER