Well the S-man survived his first week of school. Can't quite say we survived the bus, but well, that's the story I'm about to tell....
The first day the bus arrived prior to any of the teacher's being out on yard duty. He was walked to the area that the children congregate by a teacher who had just been arriving to school and then we met up with him. I didn't think too much about it at the time, seeing that it was the first day of school, but I was worried that Sebastian arrived to the school 25 minutes before the bell and that there were hardly any kids there. As such, he stuck by our side, which was fine as it was the first day.
That night he took the bus home, which was over 10 minutes late (talk about a worried mama!), and complained when he got off the bus that he didn't know anyone on the bus. We reassured Sebastian that as time went on he would know the kids on the bus but he wasn't convinced.
On Wednesday we caught the bus again and this time there were a couple of more children at our stop. By the time we arrived at the school to meet up with him he was standing by the bus with two of the bus helpers that take his bus on the verge of tears. Again, no teachers were out on duty.
When I arrived home I called the bus company and voiced my concern about the lack of supervision and the safety concerns I had with this situation. As it was only the second day of the new school day I understood that there were kinks to work out but I wasn't exactly happy with the situation.
Sebastian didn't take the bus home as he went to the sitter's. Jamie went to the school to ensure Sebastian could find her after school and by the time Jamie arrived Sebastian was already standing with Amanda (it helps that one of the girls from his class goes to Amanda's too after school!) so any concerns we had about Sebastian meeting up with his babysitter were alleviated.
On Thursday we missed the bus as it came early. Sebastian let out a big "yippee" when he realized we missed it. As such we drove him to school and I noted that his bus was there before 8:20 a.m. (teachers come out at 8:25 to supervise) but the bus just sat there with the students on the bus waiting and the children did not exit until a teacher came out to greet them.
That evening the bus was 5 minutes late and Sebastian got off the bus stating that his day was "Awesome!" One of the neighbourhood kids was on the bus and Sebastian said he was so happy as he sat with this other child. Sebastian and this other child played at our house until dinner time.
On Friday we got out to the bus stop before 8:10 a.m. but then nature called so we missed the bus, that again, came early. We arrived at the school a little later that morning but I did notice that the kids from his bus were already there in the play area and the teacher's were just beginning to trickle out of the school.
When I got home I called the bus company again, suggesting the bus pick the kids up 10 minutes later to alleviate the concerns of the lack of supervision but was advised that the bus driver had children he had to get to another school so this was not feasible and the other bus that runs on our street (that comes 10 minutes later in the mornings and 10 minutes earlier in the afternoon) was full.
So with that said, it looks like we'll be putting Seb on the bus in the mornings and driving to school to ensure he is supervised. As well, as Sebastian does not know a lot of the children on the playground he often just stands there until his friends arrive approx. 5 minutes before the bell, leaving Seb standing around doing nothing for 20 minutes.
Anyways, we will see how long this will keep up. We have already discussed that I will continue to put Seb on the bus and meet him at the school for at least the next two weeks. If we are continually seeing that there is no supervision and he is not comfortable waiting the 20 minutes by himself doing nothing then I will drive him to school, which isn't an issue seeing that I'm up already and our mornings will then not be too rushed as we'll have an extra 15 minutes and come winter, he won't be having to spend so much time outside in the cold (And no, we're not coddling him. We know our son and the tough love approach does not work. Instead it creates an insecure child who feels he can't trust his parents to be there for him, so please don't even go there/judge). There are no concerns with taking the bus home, so we will continue with that and we are hoping that with the first week of school done then perhaps more kids will be starting to take the bus which will slow down the bus getting to the school.
So if it wasn't for this bus dilemma the first week would have been excellent! Sebastian is slowly adjusting to having to attend 5 days/week but he's doing well and he just loves the art time that they've been having. I'm sure we'll hit more resistance as time goes on, but we'll deal with it then. In the meantime we hope that those wheels on the bus will keep on turning and everything will work out.