Students Rally to Support Free Rides to SchoolPosted: June 14, 2010
As this has been a bone of contention for me all year, I am posting the link to the NY Times article regarding the free MetroCard program for students.
Although most bus drivers have been understanding in regards to this, there have been a few assholes and one in particular on my B68 route. You see, I have to still accompany my son to school as he is not ready to make the journey on bus to subway alone. Although he knows the route, he is still uneasy by himself. For all of the school year, I keep a 30 day unlimited card in my wallet. But when BFS moved, the MTA refused to recognize our new Certificate of Occupancy for a school and denied the school cards.
Given the cost of a one way ride at $2.25, if I were to pay for each ride that would be $9 a day. 20 days of school roughly and you have $180 per month so an $89 card brings my ride cost down to $1 per ride.
If I have to pay for my son as well, that would add another $90 per month. Although I might be able to swing it in a good month, business is very tight right now. And there are a large number of students in our school who cannot afford it at all. So the school is now giving out cards to needy students.
There are representatives at our school that are fighting this, but now it looks like they are trying to renege on the cards for everyone.
If the MTA gets its way then my recommendation is to boycott the system as much as possible and have a bike riding campaign against the MTA. It would be better for the environment and we would get some exercise in the bargain. The only trouble is there is a safety issue for riding with children. But somehow we need to be able to strike back at the MTA where it is going to hurt them. We need to empower ourselves as members of the community.