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Fewer than 25% of Arizona public school students are taking the bus

Arizona students are using the traditional yellow school bus less and less as a method to get to and from school.

Matthew Lander of the Arizona Center for Student Opportunity told PBS’s “Arizona Horizon” that less than 25% of Arizona public school students take the bus.

“Yellow bus ridership has been in decline, and it was in decline nationally before COVID-19, mostly because it’s become more and more difficult to hire commercial drivers license holders,” said Lander.

Landers says there are other reasons for the decline, such as families choosing to enroll their children in schools outside of their attendance boundaries.

Arizona lawmakers passed a $20 million grant program to encourage schools, districts, and cities to find innovative ways to transport children to schools, such as electric vehicles and mobile carpool apps.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story have been updated to correct the name of the name of PBS’s “Arizona Horizon.”

Vaughan Jones is the weekend reporter for KJZZ, and a graduate of ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in sports journalism, with a minor in music. As a Phoenix native, Jones’s dream is to serve his community by covering important stories in the metropolitan area.He spent two years as music director at Blaze Radio, ASU’s student-run radio station. His passion for radio stems from joining Blaze his freshman year as a DJ.When he is not working, Jones can be found writing music with his band, playing video games with his friends, or watching his favorite Phoenix-area sports teams.