COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – Getting students to and from school amidst a bus driver shortage is an issue Columbus City Schools is facing and the board of education is seeking solutions.

At a meeting Tuesday, the board spend more than an hour brainstorming ideas but ended up not making any additional changes.

The district is moving forward with the changes coming to the district’s transportation software announced Monday, resulting in every student in the city who takes a bus to school seeing some kind of change starting in January.

Columbus City Schools Board of Education President Jennifer Adai said it’s important to talk about ideas to improve the district’s transportation, saying the board is looking for long-term solutions.

“I think we need to review how open enrollment is affecting our district,” said board member Dr. Tina Pierce. “Transportation-wise, is it feasible to continue open enrollment the way we have it?”

The board is examining its policies, from open enrollment to its attendance policy, to see what could be changed to improve school bus transportation in the district.

“There’s been some policy decisions that have been made by past boards that we’ve had to react to that have really put us in the position that we are in,” Adair said.

The district, like many others, is facing a bus driver shortage.

The board wants to have continued open discussions about transportation, with the goal to see what the board can do to improve its current transportation system.

“We’re going to come back at the next meeting, present that and then figure out what is our next step, what are our priorities, what are the gaps we missed,” Adair said.

With the software change, student pickup and drop off times, bus stop locations, and bus drivers could change for all students starting Jan. 3, 2023.

“This is a fix to this short-term problem, but we’re going to continue to have these problems if we don’t look at this in a different lens and that’s what we’re talking about at the board table today,” Adair said of the software change.

Adair urges parents to make sure all of their contact information is up to date in the parent portal to prepare for the coming changes, which are expected to be announced by the end of the month.