Explanation of Transportation Issues

October 18, 2020

POTP Family,

I wanted to take a moment to write a brief letter this morning providing some clarification regarding our transportation issue last evening.

Our school system uses a computer program (EDULOG) to request permission for field trips and make transportation arrangements.  I received direct verbal permission from our administration to participate in yesterday’s showcase and submitted the required digital form to arrange for both bus and personal transportation options for our students within the required 10-day window. Upon arriving at Spain Park yesterday afternoon, I accessed the EDULOG program to confirm pick up and drop off times for our field trip and discovered that the trip had been DENIED in the computer program and that no buses were scheduled.

I immediately called the director of the Transportation department, our Athletics Director – Patrick Kellogg, and our Principal – Mr. Larry Giangrosso.  It was determined that there would be no buses available to transport us to the Hoover Met in the required time frame and that we should mobilize our students and families to use personal transportation, which we did using the REMIND app.

With remarkable speed and efficiency, our band family organized personal transportation for 160 students plus chaperones and staff.  One of our band families even arranged to provide a 30 passenger bus if needed (Thank You, Dabbs Family!)  With arrangements made, the Pride of the Park paraded down I-459 to the Hoover Met.  Every student arrived safely and we entered the performance rotation within 5 minutes of the scheduled start time.  The performance that followed warm-up was as incredible as the whirlwind effort to safely transport our students to the event. At the end of the showcase, every student was either checked out by a parent/guardian or safely transported back to Spain Park High School.  It was a remarkable set of circumstances!

I plan to speak with our administration and the Transportation department on Monday to discuss the situation and identify the error that led to this preventable emergency. Situations like this should not happen, and I apologize for any unnecessary stress or anxiety this caused you and your family.

Band families never cease to amaze me! I was overwhelmed by the willingness of so many to come together and solve such a complicated situation. You embodied the phrase “Band Means Together.” Thank you!

Should you have any further questions or concerns, please email me directly at cneugent@hoover.k12.al.us or call my office at 205-439-1428. I am happy to discuss the situation with you.

With much gratitude,

Chris Neugent, Band Director