Leon County School District call center dealing with bus route issues

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By: Monica Casey | WCTV Eyewitness News
August 13, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- As school bus issues continue in the Leon County School District, the call center has been flooded with calls from concerned parents.

The school district's call center runs from 6:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. all week.

Staff members will assist each parents who calls with their specific situation; if they are unable to fix the issue immediately, staff will inform the route supervisor to look at the bus route as a whole.

"We've got staff throughout the district, not just here in one location. So, in all different offices people are volunteering to take calls to make sure we are talking directly with parents," said Leon County Schools spokesperson Chris Petley. "If they can't help, staff will fill out a form, and that goes to our route supervisor over here, so they can look further into what the parent is calling about."

Petley said the major issue was timing, with bus drivers asked to be too many places in too little time.

"We don't want students on a bus for two hours either. So we're taking some of those calls, and we've got a crew of folks who are looking at those routes, and trying to make changes, and we'll do that every day until we get it right," said Petley.

The timing had a cascading effect on Monday; once high school routes were running late, elementary routes began to follow behind; finally, middle school students arrived home an hour and a half late on Monday.

The school district is still evaluating the routes to see where they can be combined or separated, but will be making any changes at night.

"We're not going to be making a change in the middle of the day," said Petley. "Again, there's the least amount of confusion, we want to make sure our parents and students know what to expect."

The website now shows exactly when a route has been updated.

"We're going to reach back out to as many people as we can, and answer e-mails, but you know there's just not enough bodies to make that happen with a quick turnaround right now," said Petley. "Just know that we've received the message, as is obvious in the superintedent's comments last night, and we'll continue to do the best we can do."

Leon County School district high school students were released ten minutes early today, to counter the cascading delay effect; absences and tardiness will be excused until the route is resolved.

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