Oswego (WSYR-TV) -- There are new concerns about sex offenders and students’ safety in Oswego. Because of the district’s transportation policy, some students who live closer to school aren’t bussed. But one school board member says that forces younger children to walk – sometimes past sex offenders’ homes.
Oswego school board member Billy Myer was alarmed when he learned his 8-year-old granddaughter’s walk to school includes passing by several sex offenders’ homes.
“As I got thinking about it, I thought that she was not the only parent that had small children that were walking this distance,” Myer told NewsChannel 9.
Myer brought the issue up at a recent school board meeting. Right now, buses are not provided for elementary students who live within a half mile of their school. It’s estimated that about 100 sex offenders live within Oswego School District limits – more than half of them are right in the city.
Unless it's specified in the terms of their sentence, there's nothing stopping a sex offender from living anywhere, including near a school.
“The last thing I want is to see my granddaughter in the paper being abducted and now we’re looking for her,” Myer said.
Superintendent Bill Crist says the district is constantly monitoring where sex offenders are living to decide where bus stops are placed. While a policy change isn’t in the works, Crist says they’re willing to work with individual families if they’re in a situation like Myer’s granddaughter or if there are any concerns involving a student’s safety.
“It’s not something we take lightly, we continue to look at it and monitor it. We also work very closely with law enforcement,” Crist explained.
The district sends out a reminder to parents every school year. Information on where sex offenders are living is available on the family watchdog website