Hundreds of METCO students lobby lawmakers for more funding

Hundreds of METCO students lobby lawmakers for more funding

BOSTON — Hundreds of METCO students and directors packed the State House Tuesday asking for more money for the Boston busing program.

The busing program is asking for a $2 million increase to fund its after-school or so-called late bus program.

"We need funding for tutors. But if we get funding for tutors, we need to cut funding for after-school buses. So it's very important that we get the 24.2 we need," said Kahalia Hamilton, Wayland High School.

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Some districts have already implemented a pilot program to prove the money is necessary.

"Those students were spending more than an hour less per day on the bus with transportation.

"Whether it's sports, whether it's performing arts, whether it's music, whether it's visual arts, speech, debate; that's part of a well-rounded high school, middle school experience," House METCO Chair David Linsky.

Last year's advocacy day was a big success for METCO. They had an increase in their transportation budget, but that only covered half of the shortfall after ten years of not receiving an increase.

This year, they hope to close the gap.

The proposal was met with overwhelming support from several legislators.