You Can Make a Difference – Keep Red Cloud’s Buses Rolling!

August 22, 2017


This month marks the beginning of a new school year. And that mean’s Red Cloud’s buses are once again on the roads, crisscrossing the 3,500 square miles that make up the Pine Ridge Reservation. 

Added together, Red Cloud’s buses drive more than 1000 miles every day to deliver our 600 students to their classrooms. Imagine traveling those long distances in some of the nation’s most extreme weather, and you'll understand why providing safe, efficient transportation is one of Red Cloud’s greatest challenges—and most critical priorities.

Red Cloud’s buses collectively travel 1068 miles each and every day to get students to school and back home again. 


"The reality is that many of our students don’t have reliable transportation to get to school,” said Moira Coomes, Red Cloud’s Superintendent. “Truly the first step in a Red Cloud education is getting our students safely here to campus. Only then do we have the opportunity to help them explore new worlds and opportunities for the future.” 

Transportation isn’t just essential for getting students to their classrooms. Each day close to 300 children—half of Red Cloud’s student body—take part in afterschool activities, and then ride home on the school bus. And there is something to engage and enrich every single student. 

Specialized academic activities and peer mentoring programs help to support students who may be struggling in certain subjects. Budding artists can take part in clubs focusing on photography and filmmaking, painting, and writing poetry. Future scientists can study ethnobotany in the greenhouse or create their own robots. 

And all students can deepen their connection to Lakota culture by taking part in traditional activities like drumming and archery. 

Last year, in fact, a group of fourth graders performed a play—entirely in the Lakota language—called "Iktómi Wičhíte-Glega Sinté Wan Ún" or "Iktomi Wears a Raccoon Tail,” about a recurring trickster character who appears throughout Lakota folklore.

After school, students can tend to the garden while learning lessons in science.


Fourth graders performed “Iktomi Wears a Raccoon Tail,” which they rehearsed as part of their afterschool activities.


As part of cooking club activities, students can learn to prepare healthy, nourishing meals.


Safe, reliable transportation is the first step in providing Red Cloud students with a supportive environment in which to grow and thrive—during the school day and after. But this year we're facing a major gap in transportation funding. Help us reach our goal of raising $2,500 by August 31—and your gift will go directly to keeping our buses rolling through September! 


 Photos © Red Cloud Indian School


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