LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Back to school season is almost here. And for some parents, it’s stress season.

Parents like Brian Hagler and Claude Johnson-Perry are preparing their kids for the start of the school year and they say their kids are ready to be back in the classroom.

“He loves riding the bus. He loves seeing his teachers and he loves being out of the house,” said Hagler.

“I’m excited for him to like spend time with other kids. He’s an only child, so he gets kind of lonely sometimes,” said Johnson-Perry. “I hope that he will be able to ride the bus. But I mean, it’s not a guarantee.”

Dean Transportation says it’s been struggling to find drivers over the past years due to the pandemic, but now the company says it’s ready to go.

“We probably have at least 100 to 150 more drivers than we had – even a year ago,” said Kellie Dean, CEO of Dean Transportation.

Dean said the company had to hire more drivers after many decided to retire in 2020.

“Due to COIVD, it was difficult to fill every assigned run, but then also difficult to have the backups,” Dean said.

Now that Dean has enough bus drivers, the company is trying to improve in other ways, such as an app to monitor the bus route and electric buses.

“It’s the future, so we’re getting on board,” Dean said.

Thanks to the hard work of Dean’s employees, the bus company received a high honor.

“We were just awarded the top school bus company in the nation. Little old Dean from Michigan [and] Lansing,” Dean said.

While things like bus schedules and back-to-school shopping might be stressful, Hagler says this time of year is a team effort.

“Parents just got to be flexible, know that things are going to change,” Hagler said.