Beaufort County students head back to the classroom on Monday morning, August 15. Students and parents should notice several changes this year.
The Beaufort County School District has taken over management of buses; all buses operate from schools. Over the summer, 40 new buses were secured and new drivers were hired.
“Basically, we’re pretty much where we need to be but we’ve got to work on getting enough bench or back-up drivers,” District Transportation Director Kerry Mayo says.
There’s also a new disciplinary policy for students aboard buses .The District will implement a three-strike policy, which means three violations results in a student’s bus-riding privilege revoked.
The District has also adopted earlier start times for younger students. Elementary students will begin an hour earlier, at 7:45 a.m., and will be dismissed at 2:45 p.m.
“That’s going to help us get the younger kids home a lot sooner. It’s going to help us with what we hope in the long haul, reducing student time on the buses,” Student Services Director Gregory McCord says.
The earlier times have caused a tweak in the routes, staff say. They ask that parents remain patient over the first few weeks, but believe buses will be on time on Monday morning. They say there have been plenty of test runs.