While the first day of school for Hillsborough County was Friday, the rest of Bay area school starts on Monday.
But does your child's district have enough teachers to fill the classrooms and bus drivers to take them to school?
What about the new school security mandate, which requires police or armed guards at all public schools?
We went to school leaders and got those answers for you.
Bus driver shortages
Don't freak out: Just because districts don't have enough drivers doesn't mean they have no one to drive your kids to school. They will be using substitutes in the meantime.
- Hillsborough still needs 70
- Pinellas and Hardee have enough drivers
- Hernando needs 3
- Pasco needs 54
- Polk needs 60
- Sarasota and Manatee need 20
- Citrus has enough drivers but still need to hire more subs
Basically, all districts in the Bay area are short but will be using substitutes for the first day back, so you don't have to worry about your child not having a teacher.
- Pinellas needs 31
- Pasco needs 80
- Sarasota needs 75
- Manatee needs 50
- Hernando needs 70
- Polk needs 130
All Bay area schools gave a solid yes, they will be meeting the new school security mandate which requires police or armed guards at all public schools.
Keep in mind, some districts have sought outside help from their local police agencies and sheriff's office to make that happen, while they continue to train and hire more school security officers.
Hillsborough still needs to hire and train 80 to 100 school security officers, but in the meantime, every school has a security officer through partnerships with Tampa police, Plant City police, and the Hillsborough County sheriff.
Manatee will be training Guardians starting the second week of school. Until they are ready, all of the schools will be manned with armed law enforcement officers just like they did for the last three months of last school year.
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