When classes kickoff next week in Meridian, a number of students will not be able to ride the bus to school.
Because of the restructuring of the system, this year Meridian Public Schools is eliminating two of its bus routes and closely enforcing a 30-year-old state law that requires students who live within one mile of their school to walk or find alternate transportation to the campus.
Superintendent Charlie Kent said the crackdown is needed to make the buses more safe by reducing overcrowding, and also to save money.
"We are trying to streamline our budget," said Kent. "We've had some budget cuts from the state and there are just some things we need to do to ensure that we are running an efficient school district."
District officials say this change will reduce the number of buses that go to some elementary schools by two or three.
To ensure safety for the students who will have to walk to school, Kent said he plans to ask the city to add flashing lights, newly painted crosswalks and crossing guards areas leading to schools throughout the district.
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