Bus route postponements is nothing new for the Sahuarita Unified School District.

It had to cancel routes last year due to a driver shortage.

And while the district is fully staffed this year, multiple drivers have taken leave of absences for a variety of reasons, leaving the school district with no other choice.

“The challenge at the present time, which is unlike the initial challenge last time, is that, although we are fully staffed, we had a recent concentration of colleagues that had to take leave for various reasons, including family medical leave,” said Dr. Manuel Valenzuela, Superintendent of the SUSD.

The district began postponing multile bus routes Monday. It plans to continue holding these off through the week of Monday, Dec. 11.

So, what we’ve decided to do is whittle away a small percentage of routes each week with prior notice to ensure that all of the rest of the routes are able to be covered, said Dr. Valenzuela.

Parents were notified in a letter on Wednesday, and say the communication with the district has helped them.

I was very well aware of what it was going to look like, and the district held to their promise of it only being cancelled for one week, said Scott Downs, a parent of two students at the Wrightson Ridge Elementary.

Dr. Valenzeula believes parents in the district have helped immensely during the process.

One of the things we found again, through our past experience, is that people generally are extremely neighborly, accommodating and cooperative with one another, he shared.

The district said it will help out students in extraordinary circumstances who can’t make it to school on an individual basis. It’ll also encourage parents to reach out to the district if they need help.

More bus drivers are expected to get added to the schedule as the district wraps up training in the coming weeks and the SUSD expects to return to normal after the 6-week plan comes to an end.