Long walk to school concerns some students, parents

By Jamel Major - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - As Dominique Williams prepares to head to school next week, safety will definitely be on his mind.

Williams, who lives less than a mile from Cordova High School, recently found out he has to walk to school this year, something that has left him and his parents a bit uneasy.

"I kinda thought it was unfair because they had a bus last year," he said.

Cars go whizzing by quickly on Forest Hill Irene Road, and the two-lanes of traffic are a big concern to students, especially because are no sidewalks.

"If it's real wet outside or snowing, there's only a big ditch to walk in," Williams said.

"Our concern is our children," said Wendy Turner, a concerned parent. "We don't want to have our children hurt in order for Memphis to move."

According to Memphis City Schools, all elementary and middle school students in the district who live within 1.5 miles of the school will have to either walk to school or be dropped off.  The same rule applies to all high school students who live within two miles of their school.

"There a no cost a parent wouldn't pay for their child, especially with their education, safety, and things like that," parent Rolland Turner said.

District officials would not talk with us on camera, but did release a statement saying, "Every department across the district was forced to look at their budget to determine ways to operate efficiently."

And now some parents say they are left with a lot of unanswered questions.

"Did anyone take the time to see the direction that our children will have to walk?" Turner asked. "The path or the map? Did anyone take the time to drive the route?"

School starts this coming Monday.  The Turners said they are working on a plan to transport their son to and from school.

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