Good evening Plain Local Families,
I hope you had a great and restful holiday break. As many of you are aware, there is a national shortage of school bus drivers. This shortage is not only affecting Plain Local, but numerous other districts around the county and state. The Transportation office staff, mechanics and district maintenance workers have all stepped up to fill-in as district bus drivers. However, this is not a permanent solution. While we greatly appreciate the efforts of our staff, this ultimately takes time away from their daily responsibilities. If bus driving positions are not able to be filled, the reality is that we may have to combine routes, or even cancel bus routes on days when there are not enough drivers available.
Throughout the entire pandemic transparency has been important to me with our community and that is why I am calling you tonight. Our goal is to keep our parents updated as this situation progresses and make sure they are prepared in the event that a bus route is cancelled for the day.
I know many of you are now thinking, “What Happens If a Bus Driver or Route Can’t be Covered - How Will My Student Get to School?”
In the event the district is not able to cover a bus driver’s shift or route on a particular day, the students’ families involved with that specific bus number or route will be contacted via phone and push notification through the MyStop app. This will mean that you will need to provide transportation for your student that day. Please note that we will work to contact families as soon as possible once it is known that a route must be cancelled. In the event that a bus route is cancelled students will not be marked unexcused if they are absent from school as a result and we will offer leniency with tardy arrivals to school.
I encourage you to keep the lines of communication open, especially with your child’s Principal and main office staff. We welcome feedback as we work through this situation to determine how best to meet the transportation needs of our students moving forward. You, as a parent, always have the option of transporting your child to and from school.
As a district, we are committed to providing high-quality, safe transportation services that accommodate the various academic and extracurricular needs of our students. If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a bus driver, please visit our employment webpage at www.plainlocal.org or call the bus garage at 330-492-1918.
Again, we apologize for this inconvenience and will continue to work through all available options.