Has anyone come across a Canadian or NA survey or a research on the impact of the time spent on the bus on children? Something of the type: more time spent on the bus leads to effects on behaviour, learning abilities, etc, etc.
My daughter's school is under a boundary review. According to the staff proposed scenario her new school is almost 40km away (right now it is 12km). It is already difficult for her on the bus as she is in JK and she falls asleep often; not to mention we had some discipline problems on the bus. It is common sense that the more time children spend on the bus, the more tired they will be, their cognition is going to be impaired and they will lack motivation in going to school in the long run. However it will be good if someone know a researcher in this field or a published research. I found only one on the internet and it is from Scotland.
Thank you very much in advance.
I often wonder about the cost of busing and the effect of having children on the road to school for long distances.
Sorry I do not know any research on this subject. The bus issue in our neighbourhood is that since the two boards share busing school starts at eight minutes after eight and then the middle school kids and high school kids get home at two thirty and have many unsupervised hours before parents return from school to get into trouble.
Metrolinx (the GTA transportation agency) has done research on school transportation through their Stepping It Up project. I'm not sure if it will have the information you are looking for, but it may be worth a peek.
I haven't come across much in the way of Canadian research, but there is paper about parents' perception of the impact of long bus rides from Ohio. You may also want to check with the Public Health office in your area, and the resources on the Ontario Healthy Schools Coalition website.
Thank you very much, Jacqui. The Ohio paper probably will help with my research.
"Approximately 800,000 Ontario elementary and secondary school students are transported on 15,000 school buses each year. School buses are the most common mode of transportation to and from school (46.2%), followed by walking (23.3%) and personal motor vehicle (9.0%). A higher proportion of rural students use school buses because travel choices are more limited in rural areas. Children who live in rural areas experience longer bus rides than their urban counterparts, representing 75% of total bus miles. School consolidation is the primary reason for increasingly long bus rides."
This report is from 2008. It would be interesting to see how current figures would compare to these.
Wow - I never would have thought there were that many students bussed to and from school in Ontario. Then again, in addition to students living in rural areas needing the bussing, there are also students who attend special programmes that are not available to them in their home school. Not only would there be issues affecting students and funding but there is also the impact on traffic gridlock and the environment to consider.