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Fox C-6 School District cutting bus routes due to driver shortage

The bus driver shortage is not new, and it is not unique to Fox C-6 School District.

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Mo. — A school bus driver shortage is forcing changes in the Fox C-6 School District. School starts the week of Aug. 22, and some students will be ineligible for school bus transportation.

The information was contained in a letter sent to parents by Fox Superintendent Dr. Paul Fregeau. Fregeau explained that Fox will have to eliminate bus service to neighborhoods within one mile of all elementary schools and within two miles of all secondary schools.

Fregeau explained that despite their efforts to recruit and hire, Fox C-6 is 13 school bus drivers short of being fully staffed. Fregeau said families who are impacted by this change have already been notified and that the state of Missouri requires public school districts to provide transportation for students who live more than 3.5 miles from their school.

The school bus driver shortage is not unique to Fox and is not new. Most school districts struggle to get enough school bus drivers, a position that is generally part-time. COVID made the situation worse.

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In the letter, Fregeau said, “The decision to limit bus service is not based on the district’s finances. Fox C-6 has the budget and the school buses needed to provide transportation. We just do not have enough drivers. This is the unfortunate reality we are facing, along with many school districts in our area and across the country.”

Fox C-6 transportation officials have also combined bus routes in an attempt to more efficiently use existing transportation staff.

Fregeau explained that due to transportation issues, school start and end time at two schools have been slightly adjusted to accommodate transportation. The school day at Fox Elementary and Rockport Heights Elementary will begin at 8 a.m. and end at 3 p.m.

RELATED: Hazelwood makes changes to bus routes due to driver shortage

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