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Where are the School Buses and Child Care

Original post made by Jennifer, Hart Middle School, on Oct 7, 2009

My family just moved here. I am an Active Duty Military member (women) who right now works nights but has a unpredictable sked. My Husband is a stay at home dad but now is trying to find a job in the Tri-Valley Area. Not only do we have to take our kids back and forth to school but my son has to go to a school 4 miles away from where we live. Because of the age of my kids and not be able to trust other people and my own children's judgement, we are forced to drive them. I want to know why we as parents are asked for tons of money from the school and have to drive them. Where are all of the school buses? Also since we are rich like most of this community seems to be, will any or most local employer (s) that will allow my Husband in allowing for pick up and drop off of kids. And also cover for the fact that the kids have late day's on Wed's. And is there any child care anywhere that will cover before school and after school care that do not want your life savings. Everyone said Pleasanton Schools are some of the most top ranked school's in California. But what I see are parents being forced to change their sked and life and micro manage homework and other details. The reason why the school does so well is cause we as parents are doing all the work. My 6th grader is expected to write things that resemble a term paper and ease drop on private conversations in order to make up a good story for class. What kind of crap is that. So can someone shed some light on all of this. No mean comments either, I am military so therefore that does not fly. I want answers not crap from parents that think catering to their children 24/7 when they are old enough to not be micro-managed, is ok. PS that is not my real name either.

Comments (35)

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Posted by Jennifer
a resident of Hart Middle School
on Oct 7, 2009 at 8:39 am

Ps typo in my last comment......we are not rich and do not drive these big huge suv's....also a problem, we are not in hollywood people.

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Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:02 am

Slow your best to eat well, get adequate rest, exercise, and consider getting a seasonal flu shot. I have the impression that you're the one that's dishing the "crap". You also seem to have a big mouth and like to point the finger at others. Already, lots of residents are not going to appreciate your presence or your attitude.

I wanna guess your real name. Lemmy see, is it PS? Hmmmmmmmmm...?

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Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:04 am

Ps typo in my last it P_SS?

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Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:06 am

Ps typo in my last it missy prim-tive?

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Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:10 am

I think you hit the nail on the head. Pleasanton schools are excellent because parents care enough about their children's education to spend the extra time and make the sacrafices to support their learning. If you're not willing to do that, then maybe Pleasanton isn't the town for you. Please don't take that as a "you're not welcome here" statement, but I think it is important to recognize the culture of a community and how that aligns with your own values.

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:10 am

Just because Pleasanton has good schools, it does not mean that they will: raise your kids, act as daycare, etc. Take some responsibility! If you are having to micromanage your child's homework, perhaps you should get him/her some help, since kids should be able to do the homework on their own (my kids and all their friends do).

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Posted by agreeable
a resident of Birdland
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:11 am

I so very MUCH agree with your view-point! I absolutely HATE the fact that we have to wait in long lines to take our children to and from school, and hassle with all the SNOTTY stuck-up, me first, SUV driving 'moms' who are dropping off/picking up their SNOTTY stuck-up me first monsters. You are correct in that the kids have their parents do their homeowrk.... I have witnessed that with my own eyes over and over because it is faster to just do it for, while the precious monster is acting all spoiled brat on the soccer field, mom is doing the homework on the sideline. YEP. It's true!

I WISH i could help you out! I am a single mother and can totally relate to your hardship! I wonder how we can get in touch with our real names.

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Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:16 am

Additionally, I think you should try a different approach in asking for help - your frustration is understood, but using your military service to deflect critical comments while at making what could be considered insulting generalizations about the community you're asking help from is ironic at best.

Regarding the bussing - personally I would rather the schools spend the money on core education than transportation. Then again, I subscribe to a different school of thought of what our schools' responsibilities are and what our parents' responsibilities are.

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Posted by Jennifer
a resident of Hart Middle School
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:42 am

Ps typo in my last comment......we are not rich and do not drive these big huge suv's....also a problem, we are not in hollywood people.

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Posted by Jennifer
a resident of another community
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:52 am

wow I see the stuck up mom's already. ....hence why these problems don't get solved. But I am guessing your husband's don't stay at home and take care of your needs or your children's needs. I think you all missed that part...Thank you to the single mom who actually see's the light of day. Another one bites the dust. Thank you for showing me how stuck up you all are. PS I think I just drove behind one of your high schoolers in a BMW who actually almost caused a accident while giggling with her friends. To the single mom, I am sorry for your troubles. I was a single mom too on the east coast with 4 kids. It was hard. But I hope you have family here to help and friends too. I won't be giving my name and etc. I trust people here or anywhere as you can see.....Have a great day everyone...Lots of love and sunshine

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Posted by Proud Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Del Prado
on Oct 7, 2009 at 9:59 am

Jennifer & agreeable,

I've lived in Pleasanton as a struggling single mother & happily married SUV driving mother. If you weren't so negative & quick to judge those "SNOTTY stuck-up, me first, SUV driving 'moms'" & try to become friends with them you will find that they are very nice, & often offer help. I had a mother offer to watch my daughter before & after school for me when my daughter was in kindergarden (When I was a single mother). In exchange I would watch her daughter when she & her husband needed a night out. You both sound like you have the entitlement issues you are claiming Pleasanton parents & kids have!

By the way...a few points: 1st, We do have busses...Wheels buses are free for students. 2nd, If you take the time to research daycare & preschool centers you will find one within your budget, I did. Call the city to find out what programs are available to help military or struggling families. There are many. 3rd, The schools responibility is to teach our children not drive them to & from school or fit everyone's schedule. Every family has a different situation. The school couldn't accomidate us all if they wanted to.

Part of having children is having to adjust your schedule & life according to their needs not yours. Pleasanton is a great community with great people. Try not to be so negative! Your solutions will come easier...not to mention you'll live longer!

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Posted by Proud Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Del Prado
on Oct 7, 2009 at 10:07 am

You seem to be the one who is being stuck up. You might not be so bitter if your husband did have a job. I'm lucky enough to have a successful husband that takes great care of his family in EVERY, affection, home, nutrition, education, community & yes financially. Exactly why you don't get a bitter attitude from me. See it really has nothing to do with what we have...there is a huge difference in attitude. If I see someone struggling I offer help, but when I'm struggling I don't EXPECT everyone to take care of me or hold my hand. You EXPECT the world to kneel at your feet, yet I doubt you offer help to others that are struggling. Do you?

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Posted by Proud Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Del Prado
on Oct 7, 2009 at 10:11 am

One last thing for you Jennifer...I'm sure that if you and your husband were successful financially you would NEVER buy a big huge SUV, nice house or any other "Hollywood" items right?

Just because one family is successful does not mean it is their fault another family is not!

DO you give back to the community you expect so much from? MY FAMILY DOES!

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Posted by Stay Cool
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2009 at 10:13 am

I hope you take a minute to take a deep breath and re-assess your impression of Pleasanton.
Schools are here to educate, not to provide transportation or schedules that completely accomodate working parents. Pleasanton schools are fantastic due to a dedicated faculty and staff and parents who are involved with their children's education - not because parents do all the work. The standards are high; perhaps that explains your 6th grader's "term paper." I don't know how you would define "tons" of money, but our school does not ask for tons of money from us.
That said, there are two options available to you that I can think of right away. The first is that the district has a carpool arrangement program - information is sent out prior to the school year. If you missed that, please contact the district to find out the details.
Secondly, there is a service called Child Care Links ( that will match you with potential day care services.
*Plenty* of families in Pleasanton are single parent or both parents working, and they are able to navigate these same issues very successfully. I hope you are able to find the help you need - it is out there.

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Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 7, 2009 at 11:33 am

Jennifer -

I'm actually a dad.

Your attitude sucks.

Contrary to your belief (or at least the impression myself and others are taking away from your statements), it is not the community's responsibility to solve your problems. Maybe instead of criticizing the community you're asking for help from you should embrace it. What's the old saying, "you catch a lot more bees with honey...."

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Posted by JimF01
a resident of another community
on Oct 7, 2009 at 11:41 am

I am not a Pleasanton resident or a parent, so I cannot feel your pain per se, but my advice is try to adapt to your situation. If you absolutely cannot "trust other people and (your) own children's judgement" then you have to figure out a situation wherein both parents do not have to work, or 1 of you find a night job perhaps?
Otherwise, get to know and trust some parents at the school and work out transportation and maybe child care with a stay at home parent? There are solutions.
Your comment "The reason why the school does so well is cause we as parents are doing all the work" is absolutely true. You will find the "failing" schools are the ones in areas with many single parent households and parents who just plain do not care.

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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 7, 2009 at 12:49 pm

Stacey is a registered user.

Check with Wheels. I think they are supposed to have some special routes and schedules for the schools.

"The reason why the school does so well is cause we as parents are doing all the work"

Your post makes that sound like a bad thing. Studies have shown that parental involvement is crucial to student success. Google about it.

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Posted by P-town resident
a resident of Birdland
on Oct 7, 2009 at 3:03 pm

Dear Jennifer...

Why did you choose to move to P-town in the first place? Or maybe you didn't do your research before moving to P-town.. when we moved here we made our childrens needs a priority... that is why we chose a home near to the school so if my husband or I could not pick them up they had the alternative to walk...atleast when they were in Elementary school, as they grew older the middle school was not that far of a walk either...sometime before making the move you need to plan out your lives in advance.. maybe that is what you should have done? Instead you lash out to the community and the residents.. I resent you thinking that I am a stuck up rich resident.. I do own a SVU, I live in a nice home, We are not rich but I cater to my childrens needs and they are not stuck up brats..

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Posted by resident
a resident of Downtown
on Oct 7, 2009 at 3:44 pm

I have to agree with Pleasanton Parent -- your attitude sucks. Three questions for you:
1. why did you move here? (already asked, not answered)
2. why did you have 4 kids that are apparently more than you can take care of?
3. why do you think that being in the military makes you special enough to not take any crap from anyone? No one deserves it, from you either.

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Posted by Moved to Pleasanton
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2009 at 3:50 pm

To Jennifer,
When my family moved here a few years ago, we also were unable to put our children into the school closest to our home and had to take them back and forth.
At that time, I asked about school buses and was told that PUSD eliminated school bus service so that they would have more money available to pay teachers and staff. (whether that's true or not, I don't know, but it was the answer I was given).
Wheels wasn't an option for us because in order to take Wheels, my children would have had to leave so much earlier and the bus stop wasn't near.

But the good news is that after a few months, we were able to transfer our children to the school closest to our home and they were able to walk to and from school. It did require another change for our kids, but they adapted quickly, particularly since they were happier being in classes with kids in our neighborhood.
My suggestion is to get to know your neighbors and see if any of them might be willing to sit for your kids after school. There are also lots of responsible high school students who would appreciate an after school job and could meet your kids at school, walk them home and stay with them until you or your spouse gets home.
While I do know parents who get overly involved in their kids' schoolwork - to the point where the parents are doing the projects themselves - not everyone is like that.
I hope things work out for you. It is difficult to move somewhere new where you don't know anyone and things are different from your previous home. But it will get better.
Good luck to you.

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Posted by Julie
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2009 at 5:11 pm

Julie is a registered user.

Jennifer, you say you have a 6th grader - there are buses for middle and high school students. Not to be contradictory, but they are not free for students as someone said. However, you can purchase discounted Wheels tickets at Safeway. It's not a big discount, but every bit counts. Someone else also suggested Child Care Links, as I was going to. It's a great resource for all types of child care.

Honestly, the best thing you can do is to get the chip off your shoulder and instead of placing yourself *against* people in the community, *align* yourself with them. I have met wonderful people here! I moved here at 36 years old, not knowing a soul - not even anyone to put on a school emergency card. I connected with people at my daughter's preschool; people who were so kind to me and welcomed me and my child into their home. Within a very short period of time I had friends I could call on for help, as well as friends to whom I could offer my help. I'm tired of people on these blogs making quick judgments about people based on what car they drive - it's reverse discrimination. I agree with Proud Pleasanton Parent: don't be so quick to judge those "SUV driving moms". I drive an SUV and sometimes my BMW...I am a very nice person and really enjoy helping people out. I sure hope no one judges me based on my vehicles the way some people do on these blogs!

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Posted by Long Time Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2009 at 5:28 pm


Don't let the liberal and anarchist in this nice Pleasanton community scare you off. There are a lot of nice people. I agree with you! You have to be careful with who you trust and who you don't trust. Just look at the blogs here!

The reason why there are no buses is Proposition 7 (I think it's #7) back in the 1970's. It limited the property tax to 1.25%. This limited the amount of money the municipalities collect and put back into the system. I am sure you will make friends and they can help you quickly. Don't let these vultures (Cholo and the gangster) pick you apart.

You have the right mind NOT to TRUST ANYONE at this point. Do what you and your husband feels right. By the way, thank you for your service to OUR GREAT COUNTRY!

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Posted by Once a newby to P-ton
a resident of Mohr Park
on Oct 8, 2009 at 8:39 am

Wow - you people need to cut these newcomers a break. I grew up always taking a bus to school and in some parts they still exist. I get very agrevated when I am sitting in a line of cars with each picking up just 1 child. Just wait until you have to tackle AVHS! It seems your child/children have been "overflowed" to another school. It won't take long until your kids are at the closest school to you and then they can walk or ride their bike hopefully. Definately get to know your neighbors - there are a lot of nice people out there.

And never forget why you chose Pleasanton - it's the greatest town in the tri-valley area. All will settle and work out fine.

One more thing, you're jumping the gun on the afterschool care - your husband has to find a job first before it becomes an issue! That could take a while - sorry! :-)

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Posted by Happy in P-Town
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 8, 2009 at 8:54 am

To Jennifer,

If no one has said it before, "Welcome to Pleasanton." Yes, we are considered one of the pricier communities to live in around the Bay Area. Yes, we do have a very high percentage of parents who either drive an SUV or a van. Yes, we do have excellent schools. And finally, yes we do have a significant number of single parents, military families who live in town. We also have wonderful neighborhoods where everyone is very supportive and are actively involved in volunteering, philanthropy, and support of our military. I know of 3 families who have stay at home Dads. They are very active in their children's activities, regularly attend sporting events, attend boy and girl scout activities, and yes, they do assist with homework "where" necessary. This allows their spouse to carry on with their careers. No one judges them, in fact all are supported by a huge network of neighbors and friends.

If Pleasanton were a book, I feel you have wrongly judged the book only by its cover. Open a few pages, read a few chapters. I think you will find we have a lot more to offer and who knows, you may even want to read the whole book!

Welcome, enjoy what we have to offer, volunteer if you have time and open your mind.

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Posted by Amador Parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Oct 8, 2009 at 9:09 am

Jennifer- you sure do have a chip on your shoulder. When you chose to move to Pleasanton, if you rented a place or bought one you had to sign a paper saying the school district does not guarentee your kids will get in the neighborhood school but will get a place in a school, apparently you did not do all your research before making a decision for what town to live in. It takes time to grow roots in any community, you might change your mind about this place if you give it a chance instead of starting off by yelling at your neighbors.

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Posted by Rick
a resident of Parkside
on Oct 8, 2009 at 10:11 am

Jennifer –

1st – Thank you for your Military service to our nation!

2nd – Welcome to Pleasanton. You made the right decision to move here. It is a wonderful place for young families.

I want to start off by saying that Blogs – such as these – are not necessarily representative of the community as a whole. Good or bad.

If someone writes a ‘negative’ post about Pleasanton or the schools, the shops etc – there will be those that will immediately be turned off or upset. Why? Because, for the most part, everyone that lives in Pleasanton loves this place. No one wants to read negative comments about a place they love. Sure, on these blogs, there are those that seem to only ‘pick apart’ the town or groups within the town….but they still love this place, and it is why they remain living here.

There used to be school bus service for students, but there was overlap in service with the Wheels bus service and the cost to continue ‘school’ bus service and maintenance was through the roof. That cost was taking away from other needed services at the school site. I think you would agree that funds are best used at the school themselves. And, with the city bus service available – it was the right decision to discontinue school bus service IMO.

Getting a child to and from school can be a challenge….but it is a challenge that can be overcome. I am sad to read you don’t have the trust in neighbors or friends to get your child to and from school. My children are now adults but they carpooled with other neighbors throughout their years as students here. It was a great experience for everyone and brought all of us in the neighborhood that much closer.

It is my hope that:

1. You realize that this is a wonderful community and that your child and family are able to take advantage of living in a safe community with wonderful schools

2. That you can talk with your neighbors and work out a carpool system. If not, contact the school and ask if they have suggestions – or use the suggestions giving by other in posts above.

3. Before and after school care is available – and again, others have given you some great advice.

Finally, I can only imagine the stress your family is going through – new to an area, mom working nights in the military, husband looking for work, new school for your child….and just the ‘ordinary’ stress of life itself.

It is not easy…and you do not have to do it all on your own. Get to know your neighbors if you have not already. Have them over to your house for coffee and conversation. Ask those that have “been there – done that” just how they do it all. They will help. I know if you were in my neighborhood, you would have more help than you could imagine.

I wish you well…and again – Thank you for serving our country.

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Posted by Lee
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 8, 2009 at 10:27 am

I too wondered about no school buses when my kids were in highschool. They took Wheels or carpooled with friends. Younger kids need to walk or ride bikes more, if they are close enough. If not, contact the schools for carpool groups!

My family spent a lot of extra time and money on the highschool programs. I thought it was a good thing, to prepare them for college. Yes, a lot of families here have a stay at home Mom or Dad to manage the kids and school. We are lucky that way. It is not possible for a lot of families now due to living expenses..hang in there, it will ease up as you find resources and friends!

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Posted by Patty
a resident of Valley View Elementary School
on Oct 8, 2009 at 11:04 am

" That is NOT my real name" wrote:

"No mean comments either, I am military so therefore that does not fly."

"Ps typo in my last comment......we are not rich and do not drive these big huge suv's....also a problem, we are not in hollywood people."

So, You throw out "mean" comments, but demand that you receive none in return?

You throw out mean and judgmental comments about a community that YOU are new in, but say any perceived mean reply won't fly, because YOu are in the Military? It's make you look like you're in the Military because you're to narrow minded or intelligent to get a job in the Civilian world.

Your trained to outsmart the "enemy" but can't figure out (IF) your husband gets a JOB, how to get YOUR kids to school? Hmm?

Don't worry, your hubby most likely WONT find work!

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Posted by imaginary
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 8, 2009 at 11:40 am

The whole original post is made up. Just a troll.

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Posted by Patricia
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 8, 2009 at 2:03 pm

Welcome to Pleasanton. It can take time to get adjusted and find the resources in a new community, and that can be frustrating, especially when your husband is looking for work in this economy. I've got a few resources for you. They won't solve your problems overnight, but they are places to start looking for solutions.

1) Pleasanton Newcomers Group ( has family outings that are not expensive and can be a great way to meet people with kids around the same age as yours who might know of childcare or carpools that will serve your needs.

2) Pleasanton Mothers Club ( also has activites, and if you go to their 'Resources' page there are some helpful links -- including one for childcare.

3)Wheels is the local bus system, which runs dedicated routes to the middle schools and high schools. The buses are not free, but are not expensive, and you can get discount tickets at most of the grocery stores. If you've been overflowed to a school outside your neighborhoods' attendance area, this may not help you, and they don't serve elementary schools. But they might be a good choice for your Hart student(s). You can see the routes at or ask at the school office to see if they have the route brochures that serve Hart. I think they also have the route maps at the library. My kids took the bus all through middle school (and one of them through high school). They are basically municipally-run school buses because (while they are open to all) no one rides them but the kids going to that school.

4) Ask at the school about the Carpool/Bike Pool/Walk pool program, which might help match you with someone from your area that has been outsourced to the same schools.

5) Ask at your school about the 'Kids Club' afterschool programs, which I think also have before-school hours on Wednesdays. These programs are only at the elementary schools, though. For your middle school students, find out if there are after school clubs he/she is interested in (drama, band, sports, chorus, etc.)

6) If you feel comfortable doing so, look for a local faith community. When I have moved around, I have found support, "family" and great resources that have made it much easier to settle in.

7) Since you are in the military, check at Camp Parks in Dublin and ask if they have referral resources for childcare.

Finally give the town a chance. Yes, there are people with enough money to buy their kids BMWs and enough free time to micro-manage their kids every moment, from doing their homework for them to driving them to different practices, rehearsals and activities all day, every day. But there are also people working hard to pay the bills, looking for work and trying to juggle the insane pace of life with kids. And most of both types are actually pretty nice people when you interact with them face-to-face, using real names and a positive attitude instead of on an anonymous web forum.

Good luck and God bless.

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Posted by Jerry
a resident of Oak Hill
on Oct 8, 2009 at 5:58 pm

Even though this obviously frustrated lady probably could have been kinder - when is enough, enough...

Jennifer, tone it down a little - and welcome to Pleasanton...

I hope your husband finds employment and you all enjoy living here...

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Posted by Another military family
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Oct 9, 2009 at 9:53 pm

We moved here because of the military.

We made the decision to live on the economy in this GREAT town because of the educational opportunities for our kids. We could have lived in an area that had buses with military housing but that wasn't the right choice for our kids' education.

We moved into a smaller rental near a school because we did our research in advance. We knew there weren't school buses; we knew there was an odd weekly schedule (so did our last 3 schools); we knew the economic mix of the community. We did our research and only had pleasant surprises after moving in.

That economic mix (the fancy cars, stay at home parents, etc) is what helps contribute to this great community. You can't squeeze blood from a turnip and you can't have a community like this without that disposable income to pump back into the schools and other great programs. Those same incomes also buy those SUVs and BMWs you want to snob.

This is the most amazing community I have encountered in all our military tours. I am blessed that we were forced to move to this state and this area. My kids will forever be blessed by their education and experiences in this town.

You can't BS another military family. You had housing choices. You could have been living somewhere else but you made a decision to live here. Live with that decision or make another decision, but don't piss where you live. You'll only stink up the place!!

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Posted by schoolsnothingspecial
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Oct 10, 2009 at 9:47 pm

Try this experiment:

Switch the teachers in Pleasanton Schools to Hayward/Oakland/Wherever.

Result - Probably minimal if any change in test scores or grades.

The kids are smart it has nothing to do with the teachers in Pleasanton. I see no higher credentials or other reasons why they would produce smarter kids than any other school district.

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Posted by Really?
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2009 at 1:38 pm

Schoolsnothingspecial....I can tell you are really in tune with the standards here in Pleasanton, the caliber of teachers hired, or the amount of students who transfer from out of state, or around California only to be greatly behind when entering our schools. Guess you wouldn't be able to tell the difference because you can't seem to see the difference now! Way to be informed, and positive! Have a happier day.

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Posted by cialis generic purchase
a resident of Ridgeview Commons
on May 29, 2010 at 12:21 pm

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Always yours Mr. Cialis

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