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Parents say their kids aren't watched closely enough on bus rides

Some parents say their preschoolers who have to make bus changes to get to school are not being watched as closely as they should be. Brian Pettus says he's worried his two four-year-old sons may get hurt riding the bus to school. "My main concern with that is you have a group of four year olds on a bus and how is the bus driver going to watch the roads and watch the kids at the same time," said Pettus. Pettus says the principal at Howe Preschool told him there would be a monitor on the buses his sons ride to school. There is a monitor on the bus that takes students to the preschool, but there's not one on the first leg of their trip, from the bus stop, to their preschool pickup location. New Hanover County School Transportation Director Mick Wayne says, "Once we get to the year round schools, we have teachers who meet the students and help get them on the bus to get them to their pre-k center." Pettus says his experience tells him it's an accident waiting to happen, "I'm a police officer and in every case of an accident, it's because someone was doing something other than paying attention and with the bus drivers trying to drive and watch the kids, an accident is going to happen." Preschool administrators say they plan to hire monitors, but exactly when is unclear. North Carolina law requires a monitor if there are 20 or more preschoolers on a bus. An official for the preschool program says they are unsure how many students are on each bus, but say they aren't aware of any bus with more than 20 preschoolers that does not have a monitor.

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