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LCS bus drivers react to route reversal

Posted at 4:09 AM, Aug 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-15 04:09:20-04

LEON COUNTY, Fla. (WTXL) — The bus bust will soon end, for families in the Leon County School system.

Next week, the district will go back to a proven system, when it comes to getting kids to and from school.

WTXL ABC 27's Jada Williams took a look at what the superintendent called, a "colossal failure".

A phrase the superintendent for Leon County schools might not have heard a few days before.

Bus drivers across the district grateful and relieved with news of a bus route plan reversal.

"It was pretty tough. You had yelling and screaming from the schools, the drivers, everybody," said Aaron Bush, Bus Driver

Aaron Bush has been getting Leon County kids to school for 20 years.

He says that everyone knew changing the bus stops and bus drivers for students would end badly.

"In order to know what happens, you have to be a driver. The drivers are out there on the road. They know everything that's happening out there," said Bush.

That's why just 3 days into the new school year, Superintendent Rocky Hanna decided to go back last year's routes, remove Manny Joanas from his role as Director of Transportation, and end the contract with the company responsible for creating the new bus routes.

"I want to apologize to our community. We're taking action now and I hope that by Monday, everything is resolved," said Rocky Hanna LCS Superintendent.

Hanna says he was left in the dark with the whole situation.

"I should've been told a week ago that the implementation of their programs would result in numerous problems for the first day of school," said Hanna.

About 1,300 students were affected by the failed roll out.

Some students had to make long and unsafe walks to their bus stops.

By the end of the first day, some hadn't made it home until dinner time.

But now, the plan is to go back to what everyone knows.

"We should be getting the children to school on time and safely as we always did," said Bush.

The bus schedule will go back to last year's routes on Monday.

Superintendent Hanna says by the end of this week, they'll publish the new pick up times and routes for any students in need of them.