LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Hundreds of thousands of Los Angeles Unified School District students returned to class Tuesday, which means commuters should be bracing for more traffic during the afternoon commute.
With 600,000 students returning to school – some by foot, others by car, and still others by bus — traffic throughout the city will feel the impact at the height of rush hour, LAPD Detective Bill Bustos said.
“If you live in the city of Los Angeles, you work, you come visit, traffic is going to affect you,” Bustos said. “Even if you do not have a child going back to school, please give yourself sufficient time to get to your destination, because traffic is going to increase today because of the volume of students that are coming back to school.”
Mayor Eric Garcetti was also among those celebrating another first – the fact that LAUSD students all the way to community college can ride DASH buses free of charge.
“You can ride DASH buses for free, help save some money for the family, get to and from school — and more and more of them are electric buses, so you can also help the environment.”
But even as the school year starts with the usual admonitions for drivers to slow down, it will not have the threat of a teacher’s strike looming over it. In January, LAUSD’s teachers went on strike for the first time in 30 years, walking picket lines for six days.
Even though LAUSD voters rejected a proposed parcel tax in June that would raise $500 million a year for the district over 12 years, Superintendent Austin Beutner says voters can see another funding measure, possibly in the next year.
During his State of the Schools address, Beutner also touted positive trends like graduation rates that are up, and fewer absences and suspensions.