I am so excited about the new year, and about all of the new and exciting learning taking place on each campus. The teachers and staff are working so hard to provide a great learning environment for the children of this district, and we are working daily to find ways to get better in our service to the community.
I am sure you have heard that we are struggling with recruiting bus drivers for our district, and we have had to combine a couple of our bus routes. This is not the ideal situation, and we are working on finding ways to resolve the problem. We are trying our best to avoid combining routes, but when drivers are out, we have no other choice. We do have some potential drivers, but we are waiting for the appropriate testing and licensing before we can get them assigned to routes. Please be patient with us, as we work to make this issue better.
I also realize that it is very hot on the buses right now, and we are working on ways to make that situation better as well. We distributed water this week to the afternoon routes, and we will continue to do that until the weather gives us a break. Please encourage your child(ren) to drink the water on the bus to stay hydrated and encourage them to lower the windows to keep the breeze blowing in the bus. I want you to know that this is a concern, and we are working to improve the situation for the students.
As we work on ways to improve the transportation issues, I also need to address another situation. While most of the time, the students are very well behaved and respectful on the buses, we are encountering some behaviors that are not appropriate. Because your child's safety and the safety of the other students on the bus are the ultimate responsibility and priority of the bus driver, we cannot tolerate the distraction that misbehavior on the bus causes. Therefore, we are implementing a new misbehavior consequence plan for all three campuses. If your child is referred to a campus administrator for a bus misbehavior, they will receive the following consequences:
1st office referral for bus misbehavior Parent contact and warning
2nd office referral for bus misbehavior 3 days removal from the bus
3rd office referral for bus misbehavior 5 days removal from the bus
4th office referral for bus misbehavior Remainder of semester removal from the bus
5th office referral for bus misbehavior Remainder of the year removal from the bus
Students who engage in serious misbehaviors including fighting, blatant disrespect and mistreatment of others can be immediately removed from the bus for a length of time to be determined by the principal of the campus in which the student is enrolled. There may also be additional campus consequences for these types of behaviors. We expect the students at LISD to be kind and respectful while riding our buses. Please help us by reviewing these consequences and expectations with your student(s) who ride our buses.
I do applaud and praise the majority of our students and how awesome they are on the bus and everywhere else in the district. I am thankful and honored to serve the wonderful students at LISD. If you have questions about this situation or any other concern within the district, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Dr. Tonya Knowlton
Lexington ISD Superintendent of Schools