If buses could talk

Falcons and faculty share how the school bus can have a larger impact than you’d think.


Caylin Kitchner

A combination of Falcons’ favorite bus pictures.

Caylin Kitchner, staff writer

A wave of Falcons flood off the bright yellow bus; the sound of conversation and laughter follow them as they head through the gates and into the courtyard. The school buses at SSES are a place where students share some of their happiest school memories. I can say from this from personal experience: the memories made on the bus will be something Falcons hold onto wherever they go. 

My fondest memory on the bus was on the way to my first cross country meet. It was five in the morning. When I stepped up past the driver, everyone was quiet. Most of the seats were already filled. I wasn’t friends with any of the runners at the time, so I chose to sit next to Ella Ziegler, a freshman at the time. Now Ella is one of my best friends. If not for this bus ride, I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to develop a relationship with her. 

Riding on the bus allows students from all grade levels to come together. This allows students to make new friends and bond in a way that does not occur in the classroom. I spoke with some upper school Falcons as they remembered their times on the bus.  

Senior Julia Craig explained that some of her happiest memories from her time on the Varsity Cheerleading team occurred on the bus. “One time, junior year, on the way to cheer at the Mount Dora football game, we sat in hours of traffic. It was so fun because we blasted music, shared laughs, and had deep conversations. I became close with Reese Williams, a sophomore at the time. I would not have had the chance to be friends with her if I hadn’t been on that bus.”

Craig explained that the experience on the bus helped her with her cheerleading in general. A cheer team needs to have a strong bond and members must trust in one another. Craig explained how this experience helped their “stunts because they trusted each other more and bonded.” 

The SSES girls lacrosse coach, Todd Creneti, also shared one of his favorite bus memories. “After an away game we took the bus to Chick-fil-a and it couldn’t fit through the drive-through line. The inside was locked, so the employees came out and waited on our team. It brought everyone’s spirits up and bounded our team together.”

The bus does not only create memories for athletes, students everyday take the bus to and from school. Starting the day right with friends on the bus makes Falcons more excited and helps them look forward to the day ahead. 

Students like Senior Jackson Nealis smile when he reminisces about “getting on a hot spot and playing video games with my friends” on the way to school in the mornings.

Nealis said this “made my mornings.”

Our bus drivers create an environment for Falcons to make connections. They do more than just drive the bus.

Junior Patrick Van Eyck shared one of his happiest memories that occurred on his rides to school. “[My] bus driver made masks for us during Covid. It made my day when she handed me a colorful mask.” 

He went on and explained how his bus driver mad a dark time brighten by giving him a mask.

“The environment that is created on a (SSES) bus made by both the drivers and the passengers is warm and welcoming. It’s a good way to start and end the day.”