Action says arriving after the school bell is not late

Spiral 22 March 2018 33
Action bus

Photo: File photo.

Living in Coombs, our local high school is Mount Stromlo High.

After receiving many notifications from Stromlo High that our daughter was arriving late to school we started logging the times the dedicated Action school bus (route 501) actually arrived.

The bus is scheduled to arrive at 8:43 am, and the bell rings at 8:45 am. In the last 25 times my daughter has taken the bus (since the 19th of February) the bus has arrived at school after the bell 23 times (92% of the time).

We informed Action of this issue, only to be told that the bus was rarely if ever late because Action does not consider a bus late until it is more than 10 minutes after its scheduled arrival time.

This may be a reasonable standard of service for a normal bus.

But when the bus is a dedicated school service, arriving after the bell is not on time, it is late.

It is truly bizarre that management at Action could even consider that getting kids to school after the bell is acceptable.

The 501 service is a very long one which either needs to start earlier or be broken into two routes.

That the government considers arriving on time to school to be such a low priority sets a very bad example to the students.

In addition, the school bus does not even enter Coombs, forcing all students to make their way to John Gorton Drive. This is fine on lovely days, but not so good in the middle of a Canberra winter.

In the afternoons there is no school bus service to Coombs at all. Action only runs a morning service. In the afternoons, the students need to take a bus to Cooleman Court and then change to a standard Action bus to get to Coombs.

The government claims it wants to encourage Canberrans to use public transport and is spending billions on the tram. Yet they can’t even provide a bus service that enters our suburb, runs in the afternoon and get our kids to school on time.

What are your thoughts on this issue? Share them with us by commenting below.


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33 Responses to Action says arriving after the school bell is not late
bj_ACT bj_ACT 10:41 am 23 Mar 18

I can’t believe that these type of issues are still continuing in a place like canberra.

My son used to have a 7 minute walk to a school at Kambah until the ACT Government and Andrew Barr as Education Minister closed my sons school.

They promised a dedicated bus service and much improved education standards and better school resources. These promises sounded like at least something to partly alleviate the pain.

Unfortunately for my son and the other kids in the suburb, a bus that got the kids to school on time and a better education experience never ever eventuated.

1967 1967 12:26 pm 22 Mar 18

I don’t know the layout of Mt Stromlo High school, or where the buses pull up there, but 2 minutes seems a very optomistic timeframe in which to expect the average teenager to get themselves to class.

Perhaps an earlier bus?

Or petition ACTION to get their schedule changed, (good luck with that).

Grail Grail 11:27 am 22 Mar 18

Sounds like the school needs to update the timetable so that the latest bus is scheduled to arrive 15 minutes before the bell, allowing 10 minutes for ACTION’s schedule wiggle and 5 minutes for unforeseen circumstances.

    Spiral Spiral 9:19 pm 22 Mar 18

    The school has no real control over the bus timetable. That is Action’s role. The school can, and has asked for a more intelligent timetable, but with no success.

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