Switzerland of Ohio changes busing policy

WOODSFIELD – The Switzerland of Ohio Local School District has come to an agreement with parents, coaches and athletic directors in the school district on athletic transportation.

When the May levy failed for Switzerland of Ohio, the district began making cuts which eliminated such classes as music and gym as well as teaching and staff positions. The board also passed a new policy that included all student athletes had to pay to participate in junior high and high school sports. The fee was $100 for junior high and $200 for high school students.

One of the other decisions that the board made was to eliminate transportation for sporting events, not even allowing the boosters to pay. Now, three months later, with the beginning of the school year at hand, the board has decided to change the transportation policy.

The boosters will have now have the option to subsidize transportation for games. The rates for a bus driver will range from $50 to $90 depending on the length of the trip and it will now cost $2 a mile compared to 20 cents a mile the board was charging before.

This was not aimed at making life difficult for boosters,” said board treasurer Lance Erlwein. “This was all in the spirit of trying to get the $800 down and this is what everybody in the room that night agreed on … Everybody in the room that night might not have like, but agreed it was fair.”

The play to participate fee was rumored to be $800 until the board made changes to drop the $800 down to $200.

One of the main reasons for providing transportation once again was the safety of the children, as in the board did not feel comfortable allowing students to drive themselves to the games.

“The board is very concerned about the safety of the kids,” said interim Superintendent Daniel Doyle. “We do not want any kids getting hurt in a car accident … We have this as an option.”

Van Dyne can be reached at kvandyne@timesleaderonline.com.