Driver shortage causes Reed City schools to cancel bus service

Five drivers have submitted their resignations

Reed City Area Public Schools administrators were forced to cancel the district’s bus service Friday after drivers failed to report for work.

Reed City Area Public Schools administrators were forced to cancel the district’s bus service Friday after drivers failed to report for work.

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REED CITY — Reed City Area Public Schools administrators were forced to cancel the district’s bus service last week after drivers failed to report for work.

In a letter to the RCAP parents, Superintendent Michael Sweet explained the administration’s decision.

“This morning (Friday, Nov. 5) just prior to 6 a.m. I was informed we did not have enough drivers reporting to work to fully cover the district’s busing routes,” Sweet said. “Running a drastically reduced number of routes on short notice was not a good option. I made the decision to cancel transportation for Friday based on the information that was initially available to me.”

Sweet said the district has been facing issues with their transportation for months, and have already lost several drivers. He said they have been preparing for an expected driver shortage due to five drivers having submitted letters of resignation. Four of those resignations were set to take effect this week. 

“Unfortunately, we were not prepared for the situation Friday morning," Sweet stated. "I apologize on behalf of the district for any and all inconveniences this may have placed on families.”

A bus driver shortage has been impacting many nearby school districts, which have forced them to implement incentives to increase applications like signing bonuses.

Sweet explained the district is working with their provider Michigan Educational Transportation Service to address concerns and restore busing services as soon as possible.

“Please know that the driver shortage is real and also being felt in surrounding areas," he stated. "I will communicate any future challenges as quickly as possible.”

No issues were reported Monday and Tuesday, Nov. 8-9.