Last week, the Superintendent presented the district budget for the 2020-21 school year to the school board which included spending cuts to address the nearly $13 million deficit caused by a significant Florida retirement adjustment required by the state, declining enrollment, and rising healthcare costs. The necessary cuts include the elimination of regional busing to student choice schools and programs, as well as significant department budget cuts and over 100 staff position reductions.
The decision to end regional busing goes beyond the financial need. It is also one of operational necessity given the reality that we will need our entire fleet of buses to meet COVID-19 health and safety requirements when our students return to school in August.
We are greatly disappointed that we are no longer able to provide regional busing for our students as a valued service to our choice families. This was not a direction the district took lightly, but current budgetary and operational challenges required difficult but necessary decisions.
We recognize families may need to make adjustments and the Office of School Choice is prepared and available to provide assistance. We will do everything we can to work with parents as they navigate the challenges this decision presents.