Pasco schools' plan to end bus stop scares

Land O' Lakes, Florida -- For the first time, parents in Pasco County will have someone to call if they have a bus stop scare as their kids go back to school.

The Pasco school district is hoping a new call center will get rid of the school bus problems that have left kids and parents panicked year after year on the first days of school.

10 News was the first to take you inside the call center as Pasco public schools staff tested it out. Now we're there Monday as the center is activated.

The 40 volunteers who have filled up the building at Pasco County school headquarters say they are ready to fix problems we've reported on for years.

At the start of this summer, 10 News told you about a mom who said her ten-year-old son's bus never showed up. He waited an hour and a half in the heat until a neighbor noticed.

The school district denies the bus driver missed the stop. But they do agree the system was broken.

So for the next two weeks, in the morning and afternoon, they'll have one central call center to answer your questions:

What bus stop do I use? Where is my child's school bus? And -- a call that gets sent right to the top -- my child's bus showed up and they're not on it.

"With the implementation of this… here in Pasco County, and our future goal with the implementation of GPS on all of our buses, conversations like this will be talking about the excitement of the first day, versus the challenges," said bus supervisor Tad Kledzik.

Kledzik himself developed some of the new technology that's powering the call center.

Using a laptop or iPad, every school will check each bus in and out as it comes and goes. Elementary schools will check out every single student.

That information is then available right away to the volunteer operators at the call center.

No matter where you live in the Tampa Bay area, 10 News has you covered if you have school bus issues this week.

We've reached out to every school district in our area and we've listed their school bus hotlines here on our website,

Grab your smartphone right now and save that number into your phone, in case you need it.

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