Tuesday, June 9, 2009  
   Volume 79 - Issue 23 Website:www.passherald.ca   email: passherald@shaw.ca   $1.00   
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Quote of the Week
“Within the next couple years here I think they’ve got a really good chance to go all the way."
- Rick Rypien  
- on his new contract with   
the Vancouver Canucks   

 

A Fragile Lens- Nathen GallagherAs reported in last week’s issue, the Livingstone Range School Division has made its decision about the future of school bussing in the Pass, Pincher Creek, and Claresholm. Students who live within 2.4 km of their school will no longer be picked up by the bus, as of the coming school year starting this August.
Parents can buy a bus pass for this first year, but after that it’s no dice, even if you want to pay.
On the one hand I can understand where the division is coming from. They want to look for ways to shore up a transportation system that in recent years has been losing them money and essentially stealing funds from educational programs.
Every other community in the school division already runs by these rules. In Fort Macleod, for example, students walk if they live within 2.4 km of their school, and have for years. Fort Macleod even has a highway through the middle of it, just as we do. So clearly it’s not the end of the world.
I don’t see it being too great a problem in Blairmore. The students are old enough that they can walk 2.4 km, and everything is relatively flat, straightforward, and urban.
Coleman, however. Coleman could be a problem.
Much of lower Coleman, west Coleman, and Bushtown can be easily funneled toward Horace Allen through the road under the highway by Flumerfelt Park. But everything above the school, including Pineview, is a trickier matter.
 
Coleman is more rural and spread out than Blairmore, with more hills, fewer sidewalks, and a big, busy highway right through the middle –– with no controlled crosswalks in sight. Not to mention the fact that students going to Horace Allen are very young.
Students attending the high school should be able to fend for themselves a little better ... except during the winter.
Crowsnest Pass winters can get a little nasty, especially in Coleman. When the freezing winds start blowing and the snow starts falling, early morning walks to school would be horrendous.
There are no sidewalks in many parts of Coleman, and in the winter when the snow gets plowed, it’s tougher to walk anywhere except right up on the very edge of the road. It’s dark that early, traffic is out, the roads are frequently slick, and I know if I were going to school in Coleman I’d be looking for a ride every day in the winter.
And maybe that will work out fine. Maybe every parent will be able to drive their child, or arrange for their child to be driven, every day, both to school and from, despite work schedules or financial issues.
But somehow, I think it’s going to be a rough transition for some people, and it’s a shame that the board had to make this decision because of the economic realities.
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   Volume 79 - Issue 23 Website:www.passherald.ca   email: passherald@shaw.ca   $1.00   
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