Lee County schools’ town hall brings visionaries for bus stop changes

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Bench for students to sit at while waiting for their bus to school. (Credit: WINK News)
Bench for students to sit at while waiting for their bus to school. (Credit: WINK News)

The town hall meeting with the School District of Lee County is much anticipated for moms like Erin Diaz.

“I don’t think that were being informed,” Diaz said. “It’s going to be really interesting tonight to see where they stand with this.”

Diaz is one of the Cape Coral moms behind Benches for our Babes.

It is a group that already placed more than 100 picnic tables at bus stops across Lee County in the last three weeks.

“My biggest question is if we as citizens hadn’t stepped in, what would they have done?” Diaz said.

The meeting with the district was the first one dedicated to bus stop safety since the death of Layla Aiken, 8.

The Cape Coral second grader was hit and killed waiting for her school bus. Meanwhile, Southwest Florida companies, like Signarama, are contributing wooden picnic tables to improve safety while students wait for buses.

“We always have extra vinyl at the office,” said Mike Bortz, a production manager at Signarama. “We decided to maybe offer our services to putting this reflective vinyl on the tables.”

Donating reflective vinyl to make these benches stand out at the often dark bus stops.

“It’s a big task,” Bortz said. “But, I think we’re all committed to doing a good job to make sure that we don’t have another tragedy that we had three weeks ago.”

It is real changes like that moms like Diaz hope to hear from the School District of Lee County.

“I just want to know that there are some motions in the right direction for a permanent solution,” Diaz said.

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