THE PLAINS, Ohio (WCMH) — Health issues in the transportation department have forced Athens City Schools to cancel school through Sept. 7.

In a message posted to the district’s website, Superintendent Tom Gibbs said that of 18 regular bus drivers employed by the district, nine of them are out due to illness, with eight of those related to COVID-19.

“With the two open positions we already had, we are at half our typical staff,” Gibbs wrote. “Under these conditions, we can not safely provide transportation for our students. As transportation is a required service, we will not be able to have school this week.”

The district is scheduled to reopen on Tuesday, Sept. 7.

Faculty and staff are required to report at regular times.