LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The first day of school got to a rolling start for roughly 70,000 Jefferson County Public School students that commute to and from school on the district's school buses.
"This morning has gone very, very well," said Ben Jackey, JCPS Spokesperson. "we dropped off our last group of students at an elementary school at 9:45 a.m. That's about on par with year's before."
Jackey said while the district had no major bus issues to report from Tuesday's morning commute, he said that didn't lead to a shortage of phone calls into the JCPS 485-RIDE bus hotline.
"We expect a lot of calls on the first day," began Jackey. "Everything from parents making that last minute phone call to make sure they know where their student is supposed to be picked up and possibly dropped off later in the day if that changes to a few calls of 'is the bus coming?'."
Over at Hawthorne Elementary, staff went one step further to ensure all students made it to and home from school safely.
"As our kids were getting off the bus, we put tags on them so we knew exactly how they were getting home," said Hawthorne Elementary Principal Jessica Rosenthal. "All their bus tags have their bus numbers on them and their bus stops."
JCPS staff said bus delays are not uncommon on the first day of school and asked parents exercise patience if his or her child's bus ran behind schedule.
"The buses will run a little bit later today than they usually do," said Rosenthal.
"Expect that there are going to be delays. It's hard to put a number on it but we typically say anywhere from ten to thirty minutes possibly longer than that," said Jackey. "It depends on if we're dealing with traffic or if there's an accident in the area that can limit access to certain neighborhoods."
If parents become concerned with their child's whereabouts, JCPS staff urge they contact their child's school, bus depot, and the 485-RIDE hotline.
"The good news is that there is someone at the schools until all the buses are cleared," assured Rosenthal.
"If the transportation department gets a call in and there's a concern about a bus running behind or a bus not making it to a stop, they're able to check GPS," said Jackey.
Jackey said JCPS transportation staff can then pinpoint the time and location of bus stops along specific route to track down students if needed.
"The buses will run a little bit later today than they usually do," said Rosenthal, "but just be patient and all those kids will be home."
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725 S. Floyd Street
Louisville, KY 40203