North Stonington parents worry about walk to bus stop

New London

STONINGTON, Conn. (WTNH) — “It’s a blind corner you can’t see,” said Laura Mello as she took a video Tuesday of a truck turning onto her street, Anna Farm Road East.

“They had to pull in and back out,” said Mello. “Kids are standing there? You’re not going to see them until you’ve already hit them.”

The Mellos and their neighbors Jenna and Randy Holt have sons about to start the seventh grade and both will now have to walk to the end of their road about a half mile away to catch the bus.

“First of all what if it’s bad weather out like it’s raining or it’s snowing you could probably hurt yourself,” said seventh grader Ryan Holt.

The bus will no longer stop at their homes which they learned a few weeks before classes begin in North Stonington.

“It’s dark when they’re having to go down there in the winter. It’s icy, ” said parent Jenna Holt. “There’s no street lights there’s no sidewalks.”

Peter Nero the Superintendent of Schools says this was not a unilateral decision and was made in part to save on the more than a million dollars spent on fuel each year.

“How much are they saving in fuel costs? They’re putting our kids safety at risk,” said Mello.

Nero also provided school policy showing the half mile walk is within the maximum mile and a half distance for junior high school students.

These parents however have never let their kids walk to the end of the road because it’s out of sight. So that’s another reason they’re even more concerned about them waiting on the corner.

“How many kids have been abducted walking home for school?” asked parent Randy Holt.

Students living on Anna Farm Road West and Watson Road will also have to walk to the end of their streets.

“That’s actually a four way intersection on a partial S turn,” explained parent Rob Mello.

“They’re walking down here and a plow comes along. There’s no shoulder for them to get off the road there’s nowhere to go,” said Jenna Holt.

These parents say the move was made after the town looked at a study about the benefits of a later school start time.

“And they don’t get any more sleep because now they’re getting up to make that walk instead of getting picked up in front of their house like all the other kids in town,” said Jenna Holt.

They are hoping to share their concerns with the school board next Wednesday if they can get on the agenda.

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