Buses behind schedule


Eric Feng

Door 12 has consistently been a place where students gather to catch their buses and finally head home after a long day of school, but some students are forced to sit and wait until 4:20 p.m to finally begin heading home. “I think it’s a problem with the bus system organization that caused all these problems.” senior Raed Mirza said.

Eric Feng and Eli Tillemann

My four years of high school have been through many obstacles and global pandemics, but one thing has remained the same as long as in person school was an option: the yellow school buses that most of us have been riding since childhood. 

However, the bus system at Jefferson has never been particularly good, and many seniors can attest to it.

“Last year, my bus would come 30 minutes late almost every day. I even was able to walk to Starbucks and back one day while still being able to catch a bus,” senior Raed Mirza said.

This year, however, on the first day, some students on my bus had to three-seat on the bus seats. There were about ten other trios of students that were crammed onto the two person bus seats.

“The bus was overcrowded, and there were a lot more people compared to last year,” senior Raghav Tirumale said. “The freshmen ratio has noticeably increased, and most seats on the buses are now filled. There’s frequently screaming and other noises that are pretty loud.” 

The solution is obviously to get more buses and spread students thinner, but that’s not something that the administration can do on a short notice. Because of this lack of buses and the abundance of routes that these limited buses have to service, many students are experiencing tardiness to their first period classes.

“JT-407 never shows up in the morning so we have to take JT-410, which gets to school at 8:35 a.m. because it stops at Westgate. I’ve started taking bus JT-408. The bus is consistent, but it’s consistent enough that I’m late to almost every first period class,” senior Alan Hsu said.

Despite the struggles that many of us face, some buses are still operating on the same routes with the same efficiency.

“I didn’t notice a difference with bus drivers. Other than the bus being loud and crowded, we actually get to school earlier than usual,” Tirumale said.

The bus system had seemingly somewhat recovered from the start of year difficulties, but with the bus cancellation on Sept. 14, 2022, it has gotten significantly more inconvenient for some unfortunate students.

“I think that my bus, JT-406, is permanently canceled. We were shifted to JT-411, which is really annoying, and the bus is getting more and more cramped. At least JT-411 still delivers me to the same stop,” Mirza said.

Thankfully, for Mirza, JT-406 was reinstated. However for some students, the situation is even more dire.

“We had to wait at school for almost two hours. I got home at 7,” Marina Lee, a junior onboard JT-310 said. “It was really bad. I didn’t have any time to do work at home.”

Lee’s delays resulted in a school day that clocked in at nearly 12 hours, including bus time. Despite attempts to fix the issue, it appears that little can be done without more drivers.

“It was the same last year too, and it looks like it’ll be the same this year too,” Lee said. “We’ve been late to school in the mornings every single day consistently, but they still added another stop to our route so I’ll be even later. My first period is HUM, and I always arrive late and miss class, so I’m confused about what’s happening.”

Right now, the calls for change are ever stronger, but there doesn’t seem to be hope on the horizon for this washed up system.

“I want whoever’s in charge of this to know that they really need to fix this issue. [Losing time to buses] is extremely stressful for me, and I’m constantly staying up till 11 or later to finish my work,” junior Deborah Zhou, a JT-410 rider, said.