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Bus routes and school start times will be changing

School bus routes will be changing for many students, and some school start and end times will be adjusted, as we continue to work to develop a long-term solution to ongoing transportation challenges.

While we had hoped busing issues would be temporary, several factors make it very unlikely that we’ll be able to reinstate bus routes to our normal levels anytime soon. Significant changes are needed to ensure we can provide transportation to our students as mandated by state law.

Routes are currently being redrawn to give priority to all students living 2 miles or further from school and others required by law to receive busing. The 2 mile no busing zone means families living within 2 miles of school who do not have a bus available will have to find alternative transportation. Families impacted by this change will be notified today that they may not have busing beginning in November.

While creating the 2 mile no busing zone and rerouting students will create efficiencies and better fill our existing buses, it is not expected to fully resolve the busing situation. An adjustment to school start and end times for some schools is also necessary to reduce the number of buses needed to transport students. 

Staff will be working over the next several days to identify which schools would need to change their start and end times to best utilize available buses. They’ll also be considering the impact of these changes on families and staff and do all they can to address concerns as part of the planning. 

The school board will be holding a special meeting next week to learn more about how school hours would need to be adjusted and take formal action on a plan. We’ll be sharing more information with families at that time as well. 

All of the changes to routes, school schedules and our 2 mile busing zone will take effect the first week of November and be in place for the remainder of the school year. As more drivers are hired, we’ll continue to add back routes to our families living within 2 miles of school. (If you know someone who may like to drive our kids to school, please have them apply now at www.metrotn.com).

Through October 29, routes will run as they do currently and schools will remain open for early drop-off for families without busing service.


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In Other News

COVID-19 testing logo MDH

Children sent home sick during the day or those who have been identified as a close contact of someone with COVID are offered a free testing kit to take home.

Image of school bus windshield

The district is focusing efforts on establishing routes for students living 2 miles or further from school and others required by law to receive busing, creating neighborhood hubs, and continuing to recruit new bus drivers.