CARY, N.C. (WTVD) -- Kim Dean is ready for her 8-year-old grandson to get back on the bus as she counts down the start of school in Wake County.
But Dean isn't so sure the district is ready.
"Either they not coming in the morning or they coming late," she said.
Dean is talking about bus drivers and she's not the only one talking.
District leaders spent Tuesday trying to problem solve: How to get students to school on time.
"We expect the kids to be in school at a certain time," Dean said.
The district presented a plan Tuesday to make sure students are picked up for school, but about 3,000 bus riders could arrive late to class. Some students could arrive 30 minutes after the bell rings
"We've worked on a lot of plans to try to resolve this issue. Obviously, we don't have enough drivers for the number of routes that we have," said Mark Strickland the Chief of Facilities and Operations for Wake County Schools.
School board members questioned the effect on academic performance.
Cheryl Caulfield who represents District 1, said the effects of the plan could lead to learning loss.
"Those students are missing all of the information they need to go on with that lesson. So it's almost like that entire lesson they're going to just be doing catch up," said Caulfield.
Pandemic-induced learning loss could be made worse because of staffing shortages.
Transportation leaders said that to address the district's immediate needs, they would need to bring in about 30 more drivers.
"We're doing our best to mitigate the negative impacts to all of our families and students," said Strickland.
He also said that as more drivers are hired, the quicker they can address the late routes.
Meanwhile, families are trying to get creative.
"I haven't discussed it with my daughter yet, but I will be discussing it with her this evening to find out what exactly they plan on doing," Dean said.
Affected schools will be notified by Friday.