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Delaware Valley bus drivers stalled by COVID-19 outbreak

School officials and parents are scrambling to get kids back in class after positive tests sidelined many of the district's bus drivers.

MILFORD, Pa. — Students and teachers in the Delaware Valley School District had the day off on Tuesday because there were not enough bus drivers to get the kids to school.

All the bus drivers were exposed to COVID, had symptoms, or had a positive test result. There weren't enough replacement drivers to get all the kids who ride the bus to school.

Administrators say they had no choice but to cancel school and develop another plan.

"We're in a dire mess right now. Have to try to figure out what we can do. We can always go virtual, but that's not our goal," said Delaware Valley School District Superintendent John Bell.

The Delaware Valley School District in Pike County is down 16 bus drivers because of positive COVID results, symptoms, or exposure. The bus company that has the contract doesn't have enough replacement drivers, and without buses running, kids couldn't get to school, forcing district officials to cancel school for the day.

Superintendent Bell says they are currently working out a plan to use the drivers they have to get the younger kids to school in person.

"Older kids, they can be left home alone. They have their Chromebooks. They can dial in. Calculus classes are a lot easier to watch on Zoom than a kindergarten class is."

Bell says if they had to go virtual, the elementary students would be the ones that suffer most. So that's why it's their top priority to get them back in the classroom.

We spoke with students and parents about only sending elementary students to school for the rest of the week.

"Honestly, I think it's better that the younger kids are in the classrooms because for a week, we can deal with being online, but I feel like, for younger kids, it's harder to learn that way," said sophomore Brooke Cronen.

"It's harder for my high schooler and my middle schoolers to be virtual than it would have been for my younger kids because you have the distractions of video games, social media," Christina Dolan said.

"I have a first-grader, and I think a lot of it is socialization when they're that young. So getting her back would be absolutely great. And if not, if we could all go to the school and pick up laptops and plan to Zoom. It is what it is, but you know, I just hope everybody stays flexible because I know the schools are doing the best that they can," Ginger Best said.

School district officials hope that this plan of getting some students to school works out and they don't lose any more bus drivers. If they do, they'll have to come up with a new plan at least until Christmas break.

The latest transportation plan for the Delaware Valley School District is posted here.

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