WEB EXCLUSIVE: Driver shortage leads to canceled bus runs Monday

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By Melanie Lekocevic

Capital Region Independent Media

A shortage of bus drivers Monday forced the RCS school district to cancel several bus runs for the day. Courtesy of RCS district

RAVENA-COEYMANS-SELKIRK — A shortage of bus drivers on Monday forced the RCS school district to cancel several bus runs for the day.

The district announced on its website Monday that transportation would not be provided for students on several bus routes at RCS Middle and High Schools, Pieter B. Coeymans Elementary School and A.W. Becker Elementary School.

“We experienced a large number of driver absences today in our Transportation Department and needed to think creatively about how to keep our buildings open,” according to a letter sent from the district to families Monday. “”Three bus routes were affected by these absences today, but the bus routes affect all of our campus buildings differently.”

Families affected by the canceled routes were encouraged to provide their own transportation if possible, and were given drop-off points where their children could be brought.

“If families are able, we encourage them to drive their students to and from school today,” the district announced on its website. “If families are unable to transport their students to school, please contact the main office so arrangements can be made for their instructional plan for the day.”

Affected bus routes Monday included routes 310, 329 and 338 at the high school and middle school, bus route A at Pieter B. Coeymans Elementary school, and bus route G at A.W. Becker Elementary School.

“As with all schools in the Capital District, we continue to struggle with staffing shortages in our Transportation Department,” the district wrote to parents in a Monday letter. “COVID-related illness, exclusion, or quarantine happen at a moment’s notice, 24/7, making it difficult to predict when a shortage will impact our transportation schedules.”

Students who are unable to attend school due to the bus driver shortage will not receive an unexcused absence, according to the district.

The canceled bus routes are impacted for both the morning commute to school and the afternoon return trip home.

It is unclear whether transportation will continue to be affected moving forward.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article has been updated with additional information from the RCS district. Thank you.

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