For Immediate Release: August 6, 2021
Contact: Tim LeMonds (608) 228-3521
Bus Driver Shortage Causes Shift in Schedules for Many MMSD Schools
Extended Day Programs Being Offered at Schools Most Impacted
MADISON, WI — Due to unprecedented bus driver shortages being experienced by school districts in Wisconsin and across the country, many MMSD schools will have a change to their school day start and end times, with some schools being impacted more than others. Although these changes do not impact all MMSD schools, the district encourages all families to check revised start and dismissal times on the MMSD website.
It is important to know, for those schools affected, the change to start and end times is only temporary, as the district continues an aggressive recruitment campaign for drivers (MMSD Drive for Us). The district’s goal is to secure enough bus drivers and to make a shift back to the intended schedules after the first semester. As bus drivers are hired, the district will prioritize routes to those schools with the most significant time changes.
The district also recognizes families most impacted by this change may have childcare concerns as a result of this shift. Therefore, the district is currently working with community groups to provide in-school extended day programming options both before and after school for those affected. Schools will be sharing details about these options with families in the upcoming days.
MMSD has been working diligently to problem-solve around the nationwide bus driver shortage for several weeks. School districts across the nation have been forced to cancel bus routes, shift schedules, and in some states, close in-person learning altogether.
Recently, as the direct impacts of the driver shortage became more clear, MMSD shifted focus on strategizing a plan which will have the least impact on schools, while continuing to provide safe transportation services and support for all families.
We are all excited to be returning to in-person learning five days per week, however, we also understand this situation is challenging for many. These changes represent our best thinking in solving an extremely complex puzzle with the least amount of impact to our families, students and staff.