Wednesday, September 17, 2014

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Schools Make Plans For Students To Get To Class If Transit Workers Strike

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TWC News: Schools Make Plans For Students To Get To Class If Transit Workers Strike
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What would happen to city school kids if the buses and trains stop running? NY1 Education Reporter Jennifer Rainville has the story.

While most of the city braces for the worst, student Benjamin Morrison isn’t too worried by the thought of a transit strike.

“I’d have to stay home, which isn't so bad,” Morrison said Monday.

But that would be bad for the city, which stands to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars in state education aid if students are absent from school - as much as $$6 million a day in a worst case scenario if all the city school kids who rely on mass transit don't show up for classes.

”This will have a devastating effect,” said Schools Chancellor Joel Klein.

Approximately one half of the city's 1.1 million public school students, most of them in junior high school and above, take public transportation.

“I don't know how I would get to school, because my mom probably wouldn't be able to drop me here because it takes more than an hour to get here,” said student Julie Zhao.

Chancellor Klein says aside from canceling morning kindergarten sessions, he's got a plan to keep kids coming to school.

”What we would do is delay the opening of schools by two hours, and in that time hope that a combination of carpools and using the school buses on expanded routes and so forth we could get as many children into the schools as possible,” said Klein.

Some students NY1 spoke with at Stuyvesant High School in Lower Manhattan say carpools from the outer boroughs are not an option.

“My parents might have to drive me, but they work at night sometimes, so I might not even be able to go to school,” said student James Wong.

But Wong’s friend Vincent Chau, who lives in the neighborhood, says he is not that worried.

“I live pretty close, so I could just walk there. So I don't care,” said Chau.

But he might if he's the only one in class next week.

- Jennifer Rainville
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