FOLEY -- Foley School District is celebrating the success of a late bus program.

The program is funded by the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief fund, federal dollars to help mitigate the negative impacts of the pandemic.

The funds provide buses to take kids home from after school programs.

Superintendent Paul Neubauer says transportation is the main barrier from kids taking advantage of after school activities.

We started looking at what do we do for kids who don't have a ride home. Quite honestly we came to the decision that I don't care how many programs you have that are after school programs, I don't care what the purpose is, I don't care how high quality they are, if a student can't access the program, it doesn't do any good.

Many of the after school activities kids attend are academic programs, to help them with their homework. Kids in the Foley School District often live miles away from the school, so walking is not an option.

We found out that we're not only helping kids that have those barriers, we're actually helping all kids. So, there might be other kids whose parents find it difficult to pick them up after an activity. Well now, they ride the bus too. We have found that if it's good for a certain population, it's probably good for all kids.

Neubauer says they are delivering about 50 kids each day.

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