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Chicken-Fried News: School daze

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Ah, it’s August and children are heading back to school.

You better believe that the collective memories of school days here at Oklahoma Gazette run on repeat and play out like a deleted scene from Dazed and Confused or some stupid Adam Sandler movie.

We remember school buses with drivers as careless as the kids that occupy them, driving 60 mph down country roads, chain smoking and casually perusing his cargo via a tinted visor mirror that is as revealing to the students as the bearded man’s aviator sunglasses. Those were the days before cameras, when paperwork was done on paper and the metallic smell of ink wafted from the complaint pile like the coppery scent of blood.

Not anymore. Today, buses are hardwired with surveillance cameras, and Oklahoma City Public Schools launched a hotline (578-7867) to report “anything amiss related to busing,” according to a NewsOK.com story. Complaints are electronically filed and forwarded to “appropriate parties, like school officials and … the police.”

Some complaints document kids who threaten to bring weapons to the bus stop, some are about dangerous driving and a lot are about fighting.

Although the system isn’t perfect, the hotline actually helps, NewsOK.com reported. One school official acknowledged that the high-backed seats on buses block the camera’s view.

Just like in the ’80s, we here at the Gazette imagine that the back of the bus is where the cool kids lay low and remain detached, just like in algebra.

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