I had a hard time when my little guy took the bus for the first time. We drove him for the first 6 months because he had just turned 3 and the thought of putting my baby on the bus was too much :) But then his behavioralist really wanted me to try it since he showed an real interest in getting on the bus every day with the other kids. They would let him get on and sit down. He was ready, even if I wasn't :)
Of course now I love it! What was I thinking? LOL! Maybe let her get on and meet the bus driver so she is very comfortable with it. With a little one and new baby on the way, trust me it will make your life so much easier :)
I would go for the bus...and perhaps write a social story about school and riding the bus...She might just surprise you and do great!Thanks :) That is exactly what I plan to do if we decide on the bus, which I am leaning towards. I also have one of those Little People school buses, so I am going to role play getting on the bus and having the little people say bye bye to mommy, etc., so she gets how it will work.
We decided against the bus for our son. The school is 10 minutes away from our house too but I feel safer knowing that I am in the one who drops him off and my husband or my parents pick him up. That way he is not on the road any longer then he needs to be. I am sure the bus drivers are fine, but I still dont want to put my sons safety in their hands if it is something that I can take care of myself. But that is just my opinionThank you, Jimmy's Mommy. That is why I'm torn because I feel like
since I'm home, I CAN drive her, but it will be extremely difficult
with my 1-year-old and a newborn (come January), especially since we
have to walk them all the way into the classroom, not just drop off at
I just got an email back from her teacher who said that there is NO bus
monitor, but there are radios (not sure what that means...radios to
listen to or radios to call for help, lol).
Now I'm not sure again. I was really leaning towards putting her on
the bus. I'm not sure what to do. I care about her safety #1, but I
also need to care about my sanity too
I would go for the bus as well. And a social story might really help. Most kids do great on buses once it's part of their daily routine.
OK, for those of you who say YES, put her on the bus, did your bus have a monitor? I am nervous about not having a bus monitor...what if she (or the other kids) start getting really upset? She will be in the bus for 30 min according to the schedule.
You would be surprised! I was really scared and having huge anxiety over the bus issues with my kids. But they LOVE the bus! Jacob used to be in a car seat but now is not and sits like the other big kids, at first he cried when there wasnt a car seat but then after the first day he told me how exciting it was. Ky is in a car seat for safety purposes and she does wonderfully. Kids on the bus are reminded not to give her anything at all since she will not give it back, she's on the bus with other kindergarten students and special needs kids. She's on the bus for an hour and they say she has been having really good days. Here an aide is on the bus since other special needs children are on as well and they sit in the front of the bus, some in car seats and some who are not.
My son has been riding the bus since age 2. I was scared at first, but we let him get on a bus, the day before and he loved it. I had just had his baby sister at the time, and did not want to have to drag her along for drop off and pick up, even though the school was only 10 minutes away. The first day I was scared to death, but everything went great. He LOVED it. He used to try to hug the bus when he got off in the afternoon. I would go ahead and give it a try. It will make life easier for you, and I bet she will do just fine. Like others said, write a social story about it, and get a toy bus to play with. Good luck, I have been there!
Thank you, everyone. Her teacher said that obviously there is no way
to know how she will react, but that the kids do adjust. I just wish
there was a monitor. All I can picture is a bunch of screaming,
horrified children on the bus I'm sure Katelyn will love it, though, and she gets used to things very easily.
Would you suggest starting from day 1 with the bus or waiting a week or
so? I will pick her up in the afternoons, though. Again, her ABA
therapist will be there the first day of school and also the second and
possibly third day as well. Then he will be there every Tuesday for
the summer to help in the classroom.
No monitor here. But he is on a small school bus with car seats since it is preschool and only 5 kids. I would start the bus on day one, so it is just a regular part of her routine. The less changes, the better. On the days I would pick my son up from school, I think he was disappointed!
LilahLuke, how does your son do (or did he do at first) on the bus?
No problem, good luck!
My son rides the bus and loves it! There is an aide on the bus, but it is a larger bus with more kids, and not all are young enough/small enough to be in carseats, so they need one more I guess.
I was terrified at first, but I started him out first day on it so he would just associate it with school. He came home singing with the bus driver and gave her a high 5 when he got off the bus!! Now he has friends on the bus and plays, sings, has a great time (hard for me to believe!!), so much so that on the rare occassion that we oversleep and miss it and I have to drive him to school, he cries because he didn't get to ride!
Take the bus optionThanks, 42. I really think I'm gonna just go for it. She LOVES to see school buses and sing the wheels on the bus, etc., so I think if I really play it up this weekend, she will be excited for it.
We are trying to make the same decision...I am ok with putting him on the bus when school starts in August, but DH is saying NO WAY!!
I'll keep working on him though, pretty soon he might think its his own idea that DS rides the bus
I hope you are feeling well. I know with my two pregnancies I was
nauseous in the beginning.
The whole bus topic gets me nervous. It's funny because I just had
Louis's transition meeting for school in November. Yes, my little one will
be 3 on November 3. Well I'm worried he'll be traumatized from the
whole thing as well. I feel like he'll think they are taking him away and it
will kill me inside. I keep picturing him crying from the window in the
bus and I'll be waving away. I know it's the best thing for them to get
into a routine, I think it's the parents who are affected more. I know
where I live they sing songs on the bus and there are aides to comfort
them but I still have to decide myself with what I'm going to do.
See what also bothers me is that he is not talking yet, he's 32 months, so
that also affects my decision with the bus. He can't tell me anything but
hey you never know -maybe he'll be talking by November.
Well good luck in your decision and do what your heart tells you and
you'll see by Katelyn's behavior as time goes on if she is happy with the
decision. Hey, my friend put her daughter on the bus and she followed
the bus to and from school for a whole week. She was toooo funny.
Ehhhh what we do for our little ones.
I would definitely try the bus. I'm very surprised that there is no aide or monitor though. That's very odd.
If you are worried about the aide on the bus, you can always ask that it be written into her IEP that one is necessary. I'd start out with the bus and see how it goes.
My son had some anxiety issues on the bus and he is VERY dependent on me. I was very conflicted about the bus thing too because i live just up the street from school. We tried it. He isn't a morning person. What worked best for us was me driving him to school in the morning to help with the seperation anxiety and then he was fine coming home on the bus every day. we did have a monitor though. My son isn't on a bus full of kids right now which makes it a very nice transistion for us to adjust to the bus. Eventually we will get a.m. transitions down better but I am proud of the progress we have made.
Chances are your daughter would be sitting up front near the bus driver--you could always ask about that too. Maybe they would let you ride the bus with her the first time so she could see what it is all about? We had a WONDERFULLY patient bus driver who loved Caleb and stopped every morning even though he wasn't gonna get on the bus. lol. i hope everything goes well for you, whatever you decide to do.
In that situation, i would use the bus in the morning. It's only ten minutes and yes, she might really like the big bus! It would be a great help to you!
We chose not to use the bus after several months, mostly because it was an hour and 30 minutes in the morning and same in the afternoon! My ds started school at 3 years old and the school is 35 miles away. I took him for the first week just to get him adjusted to school and after that he started riding the bus. He adjusted to the change right away. I am sure Katelyn will adjust quickly also, she might even look forward to being a "big girl" on the bus. After 8 years the bus ride is just part of school to him.
At first riding the bus i weird but you get used to it. My opinion would be that I would wait on putting her on the bus until her communication is better. My son has begged me before to ride the bus because of all the hype and the bus looks so cool but I am just paranoid i have heard of many MANY stories of kids getting abused by people who are supposed to be caring for them/taking them places (a similar story i heard of someones kids being abused during transportation on this very board). And u know people who are inclined to abuse children like to work with them for access and esp disabled kids who cannot tell anyone even more if anythings happened. Am i paranoid? YES! But u have to be we live in a way less then perfect world with evil in it sadly People who abuse kids get desperate and there are many of them out there more then ud believe. I wouldnt ever say anyone who puts thier kids on buses or anything similar situations dont care for their kids safety because thats not true and not what im thinking but if you have a choice id wait till she were older. But for helping ur decision if you want her to ride the bus concerning wishing there was a monitor usually there is an aide on the bus if there are no monitors but maybe that is not every school/bus? Id ask them about it and if they have a good amount of kids id insist on something! Just think of everything when u make ur decision, 10 minutes is plenty of time for anything at all to go wrong whether its because of someone or not monitors or whatever else. Good luck on whatever one you choose and keep us updated on her transition to school!
Thank you, everyone. I also can't believe there are no bus monitors (this is according to the teacher, but she is the #1 teacher at the school and I'm sure she knows what she is talking about). However, it is a "mini bus" so it is either one of the short buses or a van, so I'm assuming it is only a few children. I do know they are all special needs on IEPs.
I am still torn. I really, really want to do the bus because it would take a lot of stress off of me. I'm already so overwhelmed and having to get the baby up and drag both kids into the classroom is going to add to the stress. But the fact that there is no monitor is really making the decision difficult. I'm sure it is due to budget cuts
I appreciate your advice!
I chose not to send my kids on the bus at that age. However, I do remember seeing at least one extra adult on the special needs bus.
I would go by safety. Do you think Katelyn would be safe riding in the bus with only the driver? Would the driver be able to drive safely if Katelyn screams? What are the exact issues that you forsee?
If not, you can request that the school to get a monitor on that bus.
You can also request that someone from the IEP team ride with her the first few times until everyone feels it is okay.
I would bring this concern up to the IEP team, and even go higher up if you need to. Now that she is going into the school system, you will be learning how to advocate for your child. Won't be easy, but it will be necessary at times.
mom to 9 year old boy/girl twins (Aspeger's/PDD-NOS)mbmom39997.3659722222
[QUOTE=143hayden]My opinion would be that I would wait on putting her on the bus until her communication is better. My son has begged me before to ride the bus because of all the hype and the bus looks so cool but I am just paranoid i have heard of many MANY stories of kids getting abused by people who are supposed to be caring for them/taking them places (a similar story i heard of someones kids being abused during transportation on this very board). And u know people who are inclined to abuse children like to work with them for access and esp disabled kids who cannot tell anyone even more if anythings happened. Am i paranoid? YES! But u have to be we live in a way less then perfect world with evil in it sadly People who abuse kids get desperate and there are many of them out there more then ud believe. I wouldnt ever say anyone who puts thier kids on buses or anything similar situations dont care for their kids safety because thats not true and not what im thinking but if you have a choice id wait till she were older. But for helping ur decision if you want her to ride the bus concerning wishing there was a monitor usually there is an aide on the bus if there are no monitors but maybe that is not every school/bus? Id ask them about it and if they have a good amount of kids id insist on something! Just think of everything when u make ur decision, 10 minutes is plenty of time for anything at all to go wrong whether its because of someone or not monitors or whatever else. Good luck on whatever one you choose and keep us updated on her transition to school!
Reading your past posts, I bet that riding the bus would put in end to the issues he was having with you dropping him off at school. Also, if your super anxious they pick up on it. "She's freaked, I don't know why, but if she's nervous I should be too." Kllylyn, Ive totally thought about that when hed ask (it was beginning of school year but he does think their cool still) and i think your prob right it would help him but there are some things that bug me (besides my obvious paranoia) he is constantly fighting with kids for absolutely no reason, crying if they look at him the wrong way, crying if they take his seat (generally), telling on kids because they did something he completely pulled out of the air and not to mention he is super hyper and not to mention theyve lost my son before they are not diligent at all. If he had an aide i really trusted then id prob do that but good luck with that at his school!
I was just as worried about the bus as you are, but my daughter started taking the bus at age 3 and she loved it. The school told me it was nothing to worry about and that she would love it, and I didn't trust them, but they were correct.
Most kids love the bus. It's nothing to worry about it.
BooBah I am sorry I didn't get back to you yesterday! My Luke LOVED the bus from day one! I wanted to drive him every day, but seeing all of the other kids get on and off the bus, he really wanted to too :) He would try to get on every day after school. He was ready, me, not so much ;)
His bus driver is wonderful. She plays kids song and all the kids love it. Now he starts summer school out of town on Tuesday, and has to go on the highway. I'm a little bit of a basket case, but it is a much better school. I am sure he will love it. I think all of this is harder on us then them!
Thank you all.
I'm still not 100% sure what to do. My gut is actually saying to put
her on the bus, but my heart is not sure. I'm just so freaked out
about having no aide, but I also trust the teacher and preschool
coordinator completely (they are amazing) and both of them think she
should go on the bus to give me a break in the mornings.
I'm also not sure even if I do go with the bus if I will drive her the
first day or not. Her teacher suggested driving her the first week to
get her used to school, but 2 of her ABA therapists said they think it
would be a mistake because it would confuse her even more. I kinda
like the "all of nothing" idea so I can tell her that the bus is just
part of what school is.
make sure if you but your little girl goes on the bus she is being watched very closely because my child had a very trempic thing happen to her on the school bus and i had to pull her out of school because she would not go back on the school bus i even made sure she was up front with the aid at all times after what happend to her.And that didnt even make her feel safe.Boohbah call the transportation department and ask about the bus assistant...this just seems so odd not to have one on the bus. I have been a sped teacher and I have never seen a special ed bus without an assistant.
I got a letter yesterday about Katelyn's bus schedule for the summer, which is funny since we never said we wanted to use the bus for the summer program. However, I am now
contemplating it for the morning pickup. I will definitely pick her up
in the afternoon, though, since according to the schedule, she would be
on the bus for an hour and I'm not sure she
could handle this. The morning pickup time would be 8:00 am. Besides, the school is about 10 minutes away.
I am thinking of using the bus for the fall, at least for the morning pickup. I
am thinking of having her take the bus in the mornings for the summer,
but I was going to wait a few weeks to get her used to the school
situation in general and not throw too many new things at her at once.
However, I am concerned that she will get used to me driving her and
then get really upset when she then has to ride the bus. Would it be
better to start the morning bus right away? My husband is very
concerned about putting her on the bus since she is so young and also
since she has autism. I know from her IEP that it would be a "mini bus with carseat" so I'm assuming this means it would be all special needs kids. I worry that Katelyn will scream
the whole way or that another child crying could upset her and I don't
want to traumatize her before school, but at the same time, having her
take the morning bus would be extremely helpful to me since I wouldn't
need to wake my other daughter, Ashley, and I am currently dealing with
morning sickness myself.
I figured I would check with all of you to see if you put your child on the bus and what your experience has been. She will be 3 on the first day of summer preschool, this coming Tuesday. I will drive her the first day regardless, and her ABA therapist will be there on the first and second days with her. I just feel guilty that I don't technically NEED to have her take the bus since I work from home, but still, it would be SUCH a huge help to me.
Thanks for your help!
ETA: OK, I may not actually drive her the first day...although I REALLY
wanted to see how she did the first day, but her ABA therapist thinks
it might throw her and confuse her the next day when she rides the
bus...IF she rides the bus. She also said she thinks we should do all
or nothing...if we are going to do the bus, then start right away to
not confuse her. I kind of agree with this...instead of looking at it
as 2 new things (school and bus), I look at it as 1 new
things...SCHOOL...which includes riding the bus, kwim? And her therapist said that in her experience the preschool special needs buses have been a great experience with singing, etc., and she said there definitely would need to be a monitor on the bus, which makes me feel better.
WWYD? I'm so confused.
We're not allowed to use the bus until the kids turn 5; and then they have 2 adults to supervise per bus. Even though it's only a 12 minute drive by car it takes 1hour 10 minutes by bus because of their route; so even when M can ride the bus we will only use it in the afternoons. (that is if he is still there - I'm unrealistically hoping for a miracle and that he will mainstream at 5)
I would send her in the bus,but the first week I would slowly get her used to it.
Eg , (first day)you and her Aid ride with her.
(second day)Aid ride with her ,you could meet them at school.
(third day)Aid meet her at school ,with school staff.
(Forth day)school staff meet her.
I would request for there to be a helper on the bus , you could even ( although sounds like you have a full plate already)pick up the cause and fight the school board for it ,Maybe some of the other parents would join you.
Good luck with your decision
I liked the idea of following the bus in the car the first few days( I may do this when my DD starts kinder this year)Yes, I'm SO glad I'm not driving. I have all I can do to get through the days now without having to add that into the mix, lol.
Glad it went so well. Like it was said before, take some time for you, if you can. Is your morning sickness getting any better?
I am so glad that things went well with her riding the bus!!! I'll bet you're relieved! Yay for Katelyn!
Thank you all.
I tried to get in touch with the head of the sped dept, but she was out today and will be in tomorrow. I left her a msg about my concerns about wanting to get a monitor for Katelyn, and if she doesn't call me tomorrow, I will call her.
However, I did actually speak with Katelyn's bus driver who sounded very nice. She explained that she is used to kids crying or screaming, etc. (ETA: She did say that most of the kids do very well, though, so I don't think crying and screaming is a normal thing) She said the bus is actually a van with a max of 6 children. Katelyn will be in a carseat also, which I already knew, so at least I wouldn't have to worry about her getting into too much trouble I asked what they do in the case where the driver cannot control the kid by talking and she said that they pull over the bus and deal with the situation. She said if it is serious, they radio for help. She did say that if Katelyn does not do well without a monitor, they would put her on a different route that has a monitor already if need be. I am still going to push for a monitor on her regular bus if need be. I'm hoping she will surprise us all and do very well and not need one anyway.
So, we've decided to start the bus on Wed. The good news is that she is actually going to go on the bus on the way home also! The bus driver explained that they thought she got out later since there are 2 preschools for the summer...one for only ASD kids and one for "regular" kids with IEP kids. Because she is "high functioning" they said she would be better in the regular class because if she were to go in the ASD class, she would be one of the only verbal students and she would most likely be the most advanced in the class. They believe she will do very well with the peer models. So they said that since she will get out at 10:30, she should arrive home around 10:45, so I'm fine with her going on the bus after school also. This will be a huge help to me since now I'll have a few hours to get my work done as long as Ashley cooperates
Thanks again to all of you for helping me make this difficult decision. I'm still nervous and not 100% convinced about it, but I've decided to give it a shot and hope for the best. Boohbah40000.768125Hey, Boobah, that's wonderful! I hope all goes well and Katelyn "blows you out of the water. Best of luck!Hope she does great. Hi Shannon, looking forward to hearing about Katelyn's 1st day and also HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Katelyn.
If its any reassurance, Jake started riding the bus when he was almost four. He'd never ridden with anyone other than myself and my husband prior to that. His bus, is a small van, with booster seats, and seats about six kids. There is no monitor, but they have the same set up you described with the radios.
I was very nervous about how he would do. He does not do well with a lot of crying or screaming, or loud noise. However, he did fantastic. He did not have a single problem. He actually had two different bus drivers, and his morning one was a wonderful lady, who did really well with him. The afternoon driver was not quite as skillful, but he still had no issues.
We're now changing drivers - and I don't think there'll be any problem (though you never can tell!).
I was so nervous about it, but he took it all in stride! Sometimes they can handle more than we think. Definately update us with how it goes for Katelyn!Hey Boobah!
I was in the same boat you were in a year ago. Only in my situation, my son had already been riding the little bus to his preschool for a year. We changed preschools at the beginning of last summer. Same bus company, but different driver and a much longer route. I worried a lot and contacted the bus company anbout an aide onthe bus for CJ because he is so routine-oriented, I was afraid he'd go into major meltdown mode when he realized he wasn't going to his ol preschool. I was told by the bus company that it had to be written into his pre-school IEP that he get a bus aide. The county rep. then told me that we'd have to call another CPSE meeting to put the request in. Sheesh! Anyway, I prepped Cj as best I could with new school, new driver, no old school, etc. I drove him to the the new school the day before and showed him where the bus would drop him off. The morning of the new bus run, I warned the driver. The prschool called me after CJ got in and told me the reports were all positive and not a peep from him. He's never had a problem since. Now in the fall, he'll ride the big-kid bus to his sister's school. Still not sure if he'll normally ride with her because he has to have speech thrapy before school starts, but for the first week of school, he should be riding with her.
Oh, BTW. His very first excursion on the little bus was when he was 3 1/2 and he was so excited. (he has a thing for buses). So we had no issues then, other than the bus driver that first day almost didn't let him on the bus because I ws told he needed a booster seat, but no one told me it had to have the harness straps....so I had his highback booster that uses the car seat belts (in NYS, he's supposed to ride in a car seat until age 4, but he was too big for it for the regular one). Luckily, the driver had a spare seat, that although she "could get in trouble" she'd use it for just that day. And even more luckily, the secretary at my daughter's school had an old bosster seat with the harness straps that she gave me later that morning. We only needed to use it until CJ turned 4, when he could ride without a booster seat on the bus. Oh, and seats weren't allowed to stay on the bus, so every morning they had to reinstall his seat and every afternoon give it back to me. What a pain.
Can't wait to hear how Katelyn's first bus ride went!
I too was very nervous about putting K on the bus. His school is about 40 minutes from our home and you need to take the highway. Anyway, I drove him all summer long and then in September he took the bus. He has been taking it ever since and he loves it and his bus driver and aide love him too. He is the only one on the bus (van) and we have it written into his IEP that he has an aide because of his seizure disorder. Good luck and she will do great. It is so hard letting our little ones take new steps.
I think a van is much better then a school bus (even a short bus). I would feel comfortable with that. Our only option was a short bus. I think you made the right choice. You certainly put a lot of thought and research into it. I work all day and see my son during the week only for a few hours at night before he goes to bed. I look forward to the 10 minutes we spend together in the morning when I drop him off to school. There is no TV or anything to distract him. We sing songs and just be silly. It is the best time of my day.
Thank you, everyone! She did great today at school! I drove her in early and we watched all the kids getting off the buses. She was so excited and wanted to go on the bus. She wouldn't shut up ("I see many people!" "I see school buses" "I see many buses!") lol. Then I picked her up and her ABA therapist and teacher said she didn't tantrum at all and she did great. We again watched the kids get on the bus and I explained that tomorrow she will ride to and from school on the big girl bus (it is the little van, but I'm glad it is yellow and says school bus on it, lol). I think she will do well. I got to meet her drivers (morning and after school are different) and both were very, very friendly. I'm soooo looking forward to her taking the bus now! Luckily my mother-in-law came over and watched Ashley this morning so today could be all about Katelyn
I'm so glad things went well at school! I bet she'll do just fine when she takes the bus! All sounds really positive for Katelyn - great news !!
OH yay for Katelyn...arn't you so glad that you are not doing the driving?
The School Bus RocKs!
Hooray for a great day at school!
Sounds like she's set for the bus. Let us know how it goes tomorrow!
Hooray for Katelyn!!!!
Hope all goes well tomorrow...I'm sure she will feel very big getting to ride the big girl bus....hope you can rest and relax at least for a little while in the morning after she gets on the bus...you deserve it
Katelyn did great on the bus today! When the bus pulled up, she wanted to go see it. The driver introduced himself to her and she was pretty good until I started strapping her in the carseat and then she got a little nervous, but didn't cry or anything. Then she said "Mama sit" and I explained that I am not going to school, but that she will see her teacher at school, etc. The bus driver asked what her favorite songs are and I said The Wheels on the Bus, Twinkle Twinkle and that sort of thing. Then I said bye and she said bye and that was it. When the bus arrived after school, I opened the door and the first word out of Katelyn's mouth was "Pears!" (she loves baby food pears, lol). The driver (a woman this time) said that she did awesome and that she was singing and talking the whole ride about being on the bus and going to see mommy, lol. I got Katelyn off and she said bye to the other kids and the driver. I got a note from the teacher that said that she did great getting off the bus in the morning and that she had a terrific day at school. Yay! No more worries, it seems
Yay! The bus drivers where you are seem a lot more competent and nicer than the ones here in NY
I am so happy to hear that she did so well on the bus. The driver can make all the difference in the world.
I called the transportation dept this morning and they said that there are only bus monitors if it is specified in a child's IEP. The man was very nice and told me to call the head of the Spec. Ed. dept to discuss this further with her. I asked what happens if the children are screaming and won't stop or if there is a problem and the only adult is the driver. He said the driver would try to control the students by using his/her voice (yeah, good luck with that) and if that doesn't work, they would pull the bus over and radio for help. What good does that do? I am waiting for him to call me back in a few min to let me know what time the bus arrives at the school (I'd like to get there tomorrow since I'm driving her the first day regardless and maybe talk to the driver or at least see how the kids are when they get off). Then I will call the head of the Spec. Ed. dept to discuss the monitor situation once he calls me back.
Boohbah40000.2682638889With my daughter we put her on Bus the first day. First couple of days she cried after that no complains all. In NJ (SB township) they always have a assistant on the bus. Boobah, you may be pleasantly surprised by how much the "voice" can work when it comes from someone other than the parents