Forest Hill parents left scrambling after bus doesn’t show for some relocated students

Published: Sep. 7, 2022 at 5:11 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - After a week of virtual learning, JPS students got to go back into the classroom - all except Forest Hill students.

“It started with them saying that my students, my children that attend Forest Hill, won’t be able to attend because the water pressure is low,” said Olympia Lee.

Each grade level was supposed to be taken to another school in the district. But when Lee went to work Tuesday morning, she didn’t expect a call from her sons.

“My son called to say, ‘Mom, the bus hadn’t ran yet.’ So I had to let my supervisor know that I had a family emergency and I needed to leave,” Lee said.

Lee says when she tried to figure out what happened, the school told her it was her job to get them to the right place.

“The secretary that answered the phone told me it was my responsibility to get my children where they’re supposed to be,” she said. “And she didn’t know what bus they were supposed to be on because buses had already started leaving.”

“That was not a communication that was given from me to my office staff to give a particular parent,” stated Principal Torey Hampton. “The information that was given from the admin team was to bring the scholars to the school.”

According to another parent of a Forest Hill senior, communication could have been more effective from the school’s end.

“About 10:30 last night, I did get a response that they’re going to be housed here at Lanier,” she said. “And it was a major inconvenience.”

According to the school district and Principal Torey Hampton, 900 students got to the correct school safely Tuesday, and they will work to find the holes in the communication for the future.

“We just need to work on the other 10-to-13 percent that’s not getting these communications,” Hampton. “Be patient with us and help us to, you know, grow during this transition. Because, you know, that’s what we’re here for. We’re all here to to help our scholars learn.”

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