Kzoo schools begins rolling bus cancellations

The district is facing a serious shortage of bus drivers, leading to a plan to drop different bus routes every day.

Kalamazoo Public Schools is facing a crisis in its busing system. The district announced on Tuesday that is has so few bus drivers that it will have to cancel different bus routes each day.

“Due to continued driver shortages, KPS will be forced to cancel identified bus routes on a rolling basis,” reads a post published Tuesday evening on the district’s Facebook page. The rolling cancellations began Wednesday morning.

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Each evening, the district will alert parents about which routes will be cancelled the following day – though it said it may have to cancel other routes without notice. The district promises to try to cancel any single route only once per week.

The announcement advises parents to be prepared with alternative transportation plans for their students. If students can’t get to school, parents should notify their children’s schools and work will be made available online.

While some parents are understanding of the issues facing KPS, others are irritated at the way the plan was rolled out.

“While I understand this may be a necessary initiative, it should have been communicated prior to now. Some families have ~12 hours to come up with alternate transportation!” wrote one parent on Facebook. “If you knew this was all but inevitable after the first week, we should have been notified before the start of the school year.”

School districts throughout the country are facing similar staff shortages, with some cancelling bus routes outright and others shifting pick-up and drop-off times to accommodate their few drivers. So far, KPS is the only district in Kalamazoo County to announce such disruptive measures to deal with the shortage.

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