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Penn Hills schools' transit director resigns

| Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014, 11:00 p.m.

The Penn Hills School District's transportation director resigned slightly more than a year since he took the job, and just a day into the school year.

The school board unanimously accepted Allen Ayers' letter of resignation, effective Sept. 5, at its first meeting of the 2014-15 school year on Monday.

Ayers could not be reached for comment.

Solicitor Craig Alexander added the resignation to the agenda after the meeting began.

Ayers started in August 2013 at a salary of $50,000 a year. His resignation coincided with the first day of school, marked by a number of late or missed bus stop pickups. Superintendent Thomas Washington said some busses were “extremely late” in getting some students home.

Board member Pauline Calabrese said many districts have problems with transportation on the first day of school.

“Make no mistake about it, it's not the bus company's fault,” she said. She declined to elaborate.

School directors ended the district's contract with transportation provider First Student Inc. on June 30, opting to sign a five-year deal with AJ Myers & Sons Inc.

Board President Denise Graham-Shealey said issues with first-day transportation affected her children.

“I take it personal, and I am sorry,” she told the school-board audience.

About 4,000 students were enrolled in the district at the end of the 2013-14 school year.

“This is a little bit shocking on the first day of school,” Jane Marra, whose daughter is a freshman at Penn Hills High School, said about Ayers' resignation.

Patrick Varine is a Trib Total Media staff writer. Reach him at 412-320-7845 or pvarine@tribweb.com.

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