We have been discussing the reasons why school bus drivers quit and the future demands. How each bus company or school district can deal with the shortages is this week’s question.
In a recent issue of SCHOOL BUS FLEET, a report on the Top 100 School District Fleets in the U.S. included some interesting information about driver shortages. The top 100 districts were asked to complete a survey to rate their degree of school bus driver shortage. Here are the percentages:
Almost one third (29%) of the districts said they have a severe or desperate school bus driver shortage. Last year only 13% reported a severe shortage, and no one reported a desperate shortage. That is a significant shift in one year.
Districts need to look at several issues to combat this problem – pay increases (many are paid below minimum wage and most require a CDL license), consider making the position full-time, advancement opportunities, better training, and value and respect for the drivers. We have to remember that not only are these people driving our children to and from school each day, but they are also disciplinarians, counselors, nurses, and role models. They should be respected and paid as such!