Lee’s Summit School District approves new schedule to address bus driver shortage

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LEE’S SUMMIT, Mo. — The Lee’s Summit Board of Education has approved a new schedule for the 2021-2022 school year.

The district said the changes were necessary to deal with an anticipated bus driver shortage. It anticipated a shortage of 15 drivers for the upcoming school year and a shortage of 18 drivers in 2022-23.

The new schedule breaks the district into five tiers. Each tier has a different bell time that is spread over about two hours across the district. Some of the changes are only five minutes different than they were last year. Others mean students will be starting the day about 40 minutes earlier than they did in 2020-2021.

Here is a look at the new schedules the board approved on June 15, 2021.

  • Tier 1 — 7:25 a.m.-2:18 p.m.
    • Lee’s Summit North High School
    • Lee’s Summit High School
    • Lee’s Summit West High School
    • Summit Ridge Academy
  • Tier 2 — 7:45 a.m.-2:45 p.m.
    • Hawthorn Hill Elementary School
    • Trailridge Elementary School
    • Highland Park Elementary School
    • Cedar Creek Elementary School
  • Tier 3 — 8:20 a.m.-3:15 p.m.
    • Bernard Campbell Middle School
    • Pleasant Lea Middle School
    • Summit Lakes Middle School
    • (Starting in 2022, the fourth middle school)
  • Tier 4 — 8:25 a.m.-3:25 p.m.
    • Prairie View Elementary School
    • Greenwood Elementary School
    • Lee’s Summit Elementary School
  • Tier 5 — 9:10 a.m.-4:10 p.m.
    • Hazel Grove Elementary School
    • Longview Farm Elementary School
    • Mason Elementary School
    • Pleasant Lea Elementary School
    • Meadow Lane Elementary School
    • Summit Pointe Elementary School
    • Underwood Elementary School
    • Woodland Elementary School
    • Westview Elementary School
    • Sunset Valley Elementary School
    • Richardson Elementary School

The district said the changes will be in place through the 2022-2023 school year, however if staffing shortages continue additional revisions may be necessary.

One plan is to move Greenwood and Lee’s Summit elementary schools to Tier 5 starting in 2022-23.

The district said Hilltop, Miller Park Center and Summit Technology Academy bell times will remain comparable to 2020-21. 

One other change that was approved Tuesday, the school board moved late-start days from Wednesdays to Fridays. Students in the district’s Great Beginnings Early Education Center don’t attend schools on Friday. The district said the shift frees up additional drivers to handle late-start duties.

More information about the schedule can be found on the district’s website.

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