The first day of school is one week from today, but you may have already seen the big yellow buses back out on the streets. For the past week, the Barrington Transportation Company has been busy test driving their buses and getting drivers in gear for the new school year. It’s a big job, but the family behind this bus company knows the business inside and out.
In 1942, the Pahlke family first opened their bus business in Barrington during World War II. Alfred Pahlke started the business with his father when he came home from the war. At first, they ran operations out of their former family home on South Grove Avenue.
Alfred passed away several years ago, but his wife, Lorraine Pahlke is running the show today with their son, Bob, daughter, Sarah and their grandchildren. It’s one Barrington business that’s family-run, home-grown and has been around for decades.
Lorraine Pahlke and her team have been busy mapping routes and making sure their 135 bus drivers are prepared for game time next week. They’ve been tuning up and testing their fleet of 150 buses so they’re ready to hit the road.
The Barrington Transportation Company is responsible for getting close to 8,000 students in District 220 to and from school every day. Sarah Sander says that’s a responsibility they take very seriously. “You’ve got to get the kids to school for school to happen. The fact that we can do it safely and have been doing it for so long is a point of pride for all of us.”