As schools reopen, districts desperate for bus drivers

“It’s a big problem,” he added. “Some had to find other jobs and others retired. Today, 18, 19 months later, the schools are coming bac...


“It’s a big problem,” he added. “Some had to find other jobs and others retired. Today, 18, 19 months later, the schools are coming back ”and the drivers“ are not there ”.

Districts are trying to make the job of driving a school bus more attractive, by offering signing bonuses and organizing recruiting events to attract new drivers. First Student, a school bus contractor, offered $ 4000 to new drivers in Helena, Mt. The company also held recruiting events it called “Big Bus, No Big Deal,” where people were invited to test drive the huge yellow buses, without dozens of children on board.

“Once you get up and sit in the high seat, we have the coaches going to ride with them and show them that it’s not hard to drive a school bus – it’s actually pretty easy, ”Dan Redford, a senior student safety officer, said Helena’s KTVH-TV last month. The work has been popular with retirees who want to supplement their income and are not afraid of working shifts, he said.

Eastside Charter School, an elementary school in Wilmington, Del., Pays families $ 700 for every child they drive to and from school. So far, parents of around 180 students have taken advantage of the incentive, and the number is expected to rise to 250, said Aaron Bass, the school’s general manager. Up to 480 students in Eastside need transportation, but the school has only half the bus drivers it needs, he said.

“We see this as the time to innovate,” said Mr. Bass. “Find innovation in the midst of chaos and crisis. “

In Georgia, Savannah-Chatham County Public Schools, which are short of 114 drivers, have cut bus lines and prioritized students who attend its schools, leaving families with children in alternative and charter schools to find their way. own way.

The district offers $ 4,000 to new and old drivers, as well as guarantees for more hours of work. Savannah is home to one of the busiest seaports in the country, so the district has always had stiff competition for commercially licensed drivers, said Paul Abbott, executive director of transportation.

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Newsrust - US Top News: As schools reopen, districts desperate for bus drivers
As schools reopen, districts desperate for bus drivers
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