LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) – The bus driver shortage has been a topic of discussion for the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) for at least five years.
JCPS amended many of its school’s schedules and transportation plans as a solution. KDE was not a part of that conversation.
“We are not involved in the day-to-day aspects of what they do,” KDE Branch Manager of Pupil Transportation Elisa Hanley said.
According to Hanley, their job is to ensure bus drivers are trained, school buses are inspected and JCPS follows state laws.
Hanley explained that students catching the bus may walk the same distance to their stops as students living within a school’s walking zone, which is set in the school district policy. JCPS said bus stops may be up to half a mile away for elementary students and up to a mile away for middle and high school.
”The law doesn’t state anything about distances or time it takes to get to a bus stop,” Hanley said.
KDE is not involved in bus routing or selecting stops. Hanley said the community can drive change for JCPS students and the school district by getting more people to apply for bus driver positions.
”If we don’t have any people to train, we can’t get them on the buses to get the students to school,” Hanley said. “We cannot force people to apply for positions whether it be for bus drivers or any other job within the district.”
KDE declined to comment on parent’s stories and concerns about transportation this school year. They do not get involved with district matters.
Copyright 2023 WAVE. All rights reserved.