Red Apple Mom

September 9, 2011

Flood Response?

Filed under: Fairfax County Public Schools — Red Apple Mom @ 3:08 pm
Tags: ,

I thought the response to yesterday’s floods by the FCPS schools in my area (Dranesville) was fantastic.

As swiftly as the waters were rising, my schools were issuing immediate calls for parents to pick up their children.

Unfortunately, some children were stranded at schools until late into the evening.  Buses and cars couldn’t get to or from schools and home.  However, most people I know had their children home safe and sound by dinnertime.

So bravo to the teachers, principals and PTA/PTO leaders who quickly rallied to action.  Quite a fire drill to throw into the mix on only the third day of the school year.

How did it go at your school(s) yesterday?





  1. TOTAL opposite at our school. Took my daughter’s bus 3 1/2 hours to get home. There was no communication until the third hour when we finally found a mom who had the cell of the aid on the bus (special ed kids). We tried calling transportation and the phone just rang and rang. The teacher tried to help but didn’t know anything other than the bus left school 50 minutes late. The AP at the school told her “well, we’re closing the school at 7.” Good thing they didn’t have to take her back! A four year old boy in her class got home at 7:30, 3 hours and 55 minutes after school let out.

    Obviously we would have gone to get her ourselves, had we known where they were! I’m still trying to figure out how to put a GPS device under her skin.

    Comment by mjp3md (@mjp3md) — September 9, 2011 @ 3:22 pm

    • I’m sorry to hear this too. Those poor kids – and the poor bus drivers. I wonder why some of the schools got it right and others didn’t? We need an app where we can plug in our child’s bus number and it could track where the bus is at any given time via GPS. Being stuck on a bus is awful. When I was in kindergarten – way back when – I was put on the wrong bus and sent clear across town. I had no idea where I was and the bus driver drove me around for hours hoping I would recognize my neighborhood. I still remember the fright I felt back then.

      Comment by Red Apple Mom — September 9, 2011 @ 11:32 pm

  2. Lost children, flip responses “sit tight, honey”, calls unanswered, children peeing outside of buses, transportation not communicating with buses, no emails, calls or KIT messages to parents. Nothing. No plan.

    Parents and good samaritans provided more comfort and communication to students and parents than FCPS school or central staff.

    Epic fail.

    Comment by momlikeu — September 9, 2011 @ 4:44 pm

    • OMG – seriously? Which schools? This is terrible.

      Comment by Red Apple Mom — September 9, 2011 @ 11:28 pm

      • Oak View Elementary. Having said that, the principal did a good job trying to recover from communications lapses that day and hosted a meeting of the families impacted by the decision by transportation to send the bus out when it was known roads between the school and our neighborhoods were blocked by floodwaters. The driver of the bus did her best with the information she had (though she was giving an incorrect location for her stranding). Transportation failed by not known where the bus was located for over an hour and did not even use systems available to locate the bus in an emergency. My frustration is with what looks to be a complete lack of emergency planning on the part of transportation and further a denial that anyone was possibly ever in danger. The bus passed through a flood plain during a flash flood warning and essentially was lucky they stopped on high ground because water covered the road at least a foot deep 20 feet ahead of the bus and over 5 feet deep about 100 yards behind the bus. Add to it that buses from Robinson were stranded on Fairfax Station Road sitting on the very pavement that 3 years ago in another flash flood completely washed away….but don’t worry, those students were never in danger. It just took the Fairfax County Police to get the Robinson buses on their way back to the school and the Fairfax Fire and Rescue team to get the Oak View bus to a sound structure in the Town of Clifon.

        Comment by Rob Jones — September 22, 2011 @ 9:59 pm

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