Students return to school on August 5th. Those students planning to ride school buses can rest easy knowing all areas are clean, sanitized and disinfected.
"This past year we used an electrostatic sprayer that we call the "bubble gun." We would spray twice a day, after the morning routes and after the evening routes. We've continued this summer. In fact, our summer school was almost as full run as our regular year. We spray after those routes. We will continue to spray our school buses as we embark on a new school year. We will spray our building (bus barn) as well," said Jamie Penley, Decatur City Schools Assistant Supervisor of Transportation.
Decatur City Schools continues to monitor the Alabama Department of Public Health and The Centers for Disease Control. As of now, masks are optional for students and staff in the classrooms and on school buses.
"They will be encouraged but not mandatory. We will have masks on the bus for those who need masks. As far as social distancing, we certainly encourage it on the bus as well," said Penley.
Last year, bus drivers required assigned seating due to the pandemic and Covid restrictions. Many of them plan to require the same this year. As far as vaccinations go, Penley says a number of employees at the system's bus barn have received their vaccination against Covid-19.
"For buses to run, we ideally needed drivers that were vaccinated to run. They were not mandated. They were just encouraged. I think the bus depot is one of the highest rated for vaccinations as far as most faculty members getting the shot. They love their job. It's a social job. They love the kids. They were excited. We were worried last year we might not have some of them come back but we had a full house last year. This year we are running the same numbers," said Penley.