School district says bus driver shortage has been addressed

Posted at 10:17 PM, Aug 04, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-04 22:17:50-04

SOUTHWEST FLORIDA -- If you're worried about getting the kids to school on time this year, one Southwest Florida county says don't panic.

Lee County says it's solved its bus driver shortage problem.

A bus driver shortage plagued the district last year with late pick-ups and drop-offs, with many parents telling Fox 4 that students missed part of class because of it.  But now the district says it has filled all open positions and then some.

"We have a little over 760 routes, and a bus operator for every route.  We also have a very large substitute work force which is also backing up those bus operators," says Lee Schools superintendent Greg Adkins.

16 of those bus routes are new, with 36 new buses carting students around town and 42 additional drivers.

It may be hard to do for some parents, but here's a tip: Dr. Adkins says resist the urge to drop off kids on the first day of school.  "If you plan to ride the bus, plan to do it the first day of school.  Traffic challenges as you try to get to school on the first day.''

While the district may have found enough bus drivers, it's still in need of teachers.  School officials say they are in a better place than they were at this point last year but,  specifically need elementary, ESE, and science and math teachers.