Soaked at School: Students walk through water, remain drenched

(WSVN) - The bus is an easy way for kids to get to school, but for kids at one Fort Lauderdale bus stop … the rainy season means walking through standing water and having to spend the day soaked at school. 7’s Brandon Beyer has the story.

Jaxson Monteleone takes the bus to New River Middle School in Fort Lauderdale.

When the weather is good, there’s no problem — but when it rains, his bus stop floods.

Jaxson Monteleone, student: “It floods out a lot with high water, and some of the kids, they have to stand in the water to get on the bus and their shoes get all wet throughout the school day.”

Jaxson’s dad says the school bus always stops at the place where the water gets the deepest…

Chris Monteleone, concerned parent: “This whole area right here — it’s a complete pond.”

His before and after pictures show the difference. After a hard rain, the water can go up to the kids’ ankles.

Chris Monteleone: “The bus driver stopped here and I said, ‘Hey, can you back up?’ and he goes, ‘No.'”

He says the driver refuses to stop anywhere else, except right here at Southwest 21st Street and Third Avenue.

Chris Monteleone: “I couldn’t believe it! I’m like watching my kid walk through it and his pants are getting soaked and he goes on the bus and I’m like, ‘Oh, man. This poor kid.'”

And the students don’t have lockers at school where they could store rain boots, so they’re damp all day.

Jaxson Monteleone: “It feels uncomfortable throughout the school day and your shoes are just all cold and wet.”

Chris sent pictures and videos of the flooded bus stop to Broward Transportation … asking them to move the bus stop one block north.

But the request was denied.

Chris Monteleone: “So it’s up to their ankles in water. You go through ruining a pair of $100 shoes, you know? It doesn’t make any sense.”

We contacted Broward County Schools about the bus stop concerns.

They sent us a statement saying, “Transportation Department staff recently surveyed the bus stop, including following heavy rain … and deem this designated stop for 15 students to be a safe school bus stop.”

Chris Monteleone: “It’s just red tape. It’s annoying to know that nobody — there’s no one there to help you.”

With summer just around the corner, Chris and Jaxson won’t have to worry about rainy days. But in the fall when school starts again, they hope Broward Transportation will make some changes so the kids won’t be soaked at school.

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