Monday, April 16, 2012

Door-to-Door Bus Service Problem Persists in the Hazelwood School District

The ongoing problem of “door-to-door” or “personalized” bus service continues to persist in the Hazelwood School District, even after bringing this matter to the attention of the administration on numerous occasions in the past several years, as well as in a letter from this committee to the board of education in November of 2007.

A recent example occurred on Friday morning, March 30th at approximately 7:30 a.m. in the Paddock Forest, Lakeside Hills, and Parc Charlene subdivisions in which bus #38 was observed picking up students in front of their homes at non-designated bus stops, in addition to picking up students at the designated bus stops.  The foregoing example is just one of the many incidences of this practice, which occurs throughout the district, according to district residents.  Many Hazelwood School District residents have observed and complained about this issue for years, but to no avail.   One North County trustee director often said, “I’ll be dead by the time this problem is resolved.”  And, he was.

The times may have changed when some of us attended Hazelwood schools in the late 60’s and early 70’s, but there is still a district policy regarding designated bus stops that needs to be enforced and adhered to just as it was in the days of yesteryear.  Those students and/or parents’ who expect the school district to operate a “Call-A-Ride,” taxi, or limo service, need to explore other options, as there is no justification for buses to stop at other than the designated bus stops.  And, those bus drivers who elect to continually violate the school district transportation policy should be terminated.

It is not clear how the problem of the non-designated stops became rampant, but it needs to stop – now.  The Hazelwood School District has a responsibility to its residents to enforce the district transportation polices, among others, because those district residents are also the taxpayers who support the district by voting to approve the many bond issues that are vital to sustain and improve the quality of the school district. 

The next Hazelwood School District Board of Education meeting is tomorrow, Tuesday, April 17 at 6:30 p.m. at the HSD Learning Center, which is located at 15955 New Halls Ferry Road.  If you are among the many Hazelwood School District residents who are fed up with the practice of door-to-door bus service, please consider attending this meeting to voice your opposition to the board of education. 

In the event that you observe incidences of buses picking up and/or dropping off students at non-designated bus stops, call or e-mail the following Hazelwood School District officials to report those incidents:

Ø       Dr. Steve Price, Superintendent, 953-5012/

Ø       Cathy Ottinger, Director or Transportation,953-5955 -

Ø       Cheryl Latham, President, Board of Education, 953-5203

The successful resolution of this problem is dependent upon the actions of the district administration and board of education, and this committee is hopeful that the administration and board will make the right decision and put an end to this practice for good.  

Please pass this communication on to other interested parties, especially to those who do not have internet access.  In the interim, check out Subdivision Trustees – St. Louis Metro Area ( for updates on this issue and others of interest to residents in St. Louis County.

Anyone interested in joining the protected e-mail distribution list should send his/her name, e-mail address, and subdivision/area of residence to


  1. Anonymous8:19 AM

    What's wrong with "Velet" service. Seems like a high regard for child safety.

    1. Anonymous10:19 AM

      One thing that’s wrong with it is that it’s spelled VALET. If kids didn’t have door to door service they might have time to learn to spell.

  2. Anonymous11:49 AM

    This situation isn’t unique to Hazelwood. It happens in Oakville too. Kids are picked up at one spot and dropped off at a different location so that they take shortcuts home through other people’s yards. This makes innocent people liable if the kid gets hurt in their yard even though they don’t belong there.

  3. Anonymous1:03 PM

    I went to the School Board Meeting and no one but me and Greg were in attendance for this issue. This is not a problem in our neighborhood. There are little complaints about these incidents and one of the pick up locations happen to be a designated pick up and drop off location (given about 100 feet from one of the student's house) This is not on the agenda of concerns in our neighborhood of criminal activity or malice/malicious behavior.