Acknowledging that some challenges remain, Arlington’s superintendent of schools reported what he considered “marked improvements” in school-transportation matters at the start of this school year.
Just over 16,000 students are slated to be served by 158 school-bus routes for the new school year, Superintendent Francisco Durán reported to School Board members on Sept. 8. And while there were some driver vacancies and no substitutes to pick up the slack, the start-of-school performance seemed almost tranquil compared to several recent years, where chaos (controlled or uncontrolled) seemed to reign.
Durán said recruitment of bus drivers continues but noted that “it takes quite a while to become [certified as] a driver,” so there may be some teething pains continuing as the school year gets ramped up.
The school system this year has inaugurated a new mobile app that allows parents to track where buses are, and also has worked with the Arlington Transit (ART) bus network in an effort to develop further options for students.