Call 4 Action - Long school bus ride home

"That was very irresponsible - for everybody to got home and enjoy a good supper while my kid is still on the bus," Isabel Aragon said to school officials at Elma Barrera in Santa Rosa.

Aragon said she is furious that her fifth-grade son who stays after school for tutoring and a book club was still not home at 7:30 p.m. last night.

Worried about his safety, Aragon took to the streets of Santa Rosa until she finally intercepted the bus transporting her son and the other students that participate in the after school program.

"He comes home tired and doesn TMt' want to eat dinner, Aragon said. It's too late - they shouldn't be coming home that late from the after school program. It finishes at 5 p.m. (but) by the time he gets here it's 6:30 p.m. on."

Aragon said her son John also participates in the after school guitar program at Santa Rosa High School.

She is glad that both her sons can ride home on the same bus, but at the same time she is concerned that the after school program bus not only mixes elementary, middle and high school students, but is also way too packed making it a safety issue.

"It's very packed. Well, most of the time it's two students for every seat or three students, John Aragon said. It's a hard time just being there (with) a lot of kids yelling- it's very frustrating."

Aragon said now that her children are coming home so late she doesn't get to spend quality time with them.

She fears if this continues it will affect their school performance, so she's now considering pulling them from all after school activities.

"My message to the school district is for them to try to run another bus route or at least try to have the elementary kids be home earlier than the high school kids, Aragon said. It's harder for them to take a shower and you have to be telling them (to hurry up) because they drag their feet (and) he needs to eat."

Santa Rosa Superintendent of Schools Heriberto Villarreal said he has already spoken to the director of transportation to resolve the issue.

He said as far as the overcrowding on the bus, the district will have to see if there are funds available to run another bus to transport students in the after school programs.