Baldwin City (Kan.) School District is cutting bus service for students who live less than 2.5 miles from their school. File photo by John Horton

Baldwin City (Kan.) School District is cutting bus service for students who live less than 2.5 miles from their school. File photo by John Horton

BALDWIN CITY, Kan. — A shortage of school bus drivers has led to cuts in school bus service for some students here.

Last month, the school board for Baldwin City School District (USD 348) voted to discontinue school bus transportation for students who live less than 2.5 miles from the school they attend. The change goes into effect for the 2018-19 school year.

Kansas state law does not require school districts to provide transportation for students who live within 2.5 miles of their school. Transportation is required in some cases for students who live at least 2.5 miles from school, such as if the school or the student’s home is located outside of city limits.

In an announcement on Facebook, Baldwin City School District cited driver shortage as the reason for its school bus service reduction.

“We have been advertising for some time now and the board has been increasing the pay for drivers over the past few years,” the district said. “We will continue to advertise and actively search for bus drivers.”

Baldwin City school board members indicated that they would consider reversing the service cut in the future if the district can find enough school bus drivers.

Also, the board approved a committee “to examine some details with this change and make some recommendations to the board,” the district said on Facebook.

KSHB reports that the school bus service reduction will affect 250 students.

"This is not something that we wanted to do,” Superintendent Paul Dorathy told KSHB. “We just don’t have enough drivers to commit to all of this.”

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