Panama City, FL –
BENTONVILLE, Arche. (Nation NowAs COVID-19 vaccination warrants continue to come into effect in several states, some fear the shortage of school bus drivers will worsen if drivers refuse to be vaccinated.
Hundreds of drivers have threatened to quit because of the entry into force of new vaccination warrants this week in New York and Connecticut. As a result, the administrators breathe a sigh of relief that has yet to come.
In a recent Survey by the National Association for the Transportation of Pupils, more than half of student transportation coordinators nationwide described their shortage of school bus drivers as “serious” or “desperate.”
The nation’s shortage of bus drivers has made it difficult to start a school year, delaying the start of some schools and forcing school districts to find creative ways to fill vacancies.
Many school districts have increased starting salaries, paid for training, and offered thousands of signing and retention bonuses. For example, in New Jersey, one district offers a starting salary of $ 23 an hour.
“We have had drivers who left our district to go to others who pay more; now we hope some will leave other districts to come to us, ”said Kyle Newton, spokesperson for Anderson District 5.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul has advocated for speeding up the licensing process to speed up hiring. And Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker has activated the National Guard, with 90 members currently training to drive transport vans.
Schools in Deptford, New Jersey, have moved to early dismissal to get all students home.
Part of the nationwide adaptation race can be felt in Arkansas as well.
“We were able to consolidate a few of our routes to make it work with our current number of bus drivers, but we have no wiggle room if someone becomes ill,” said the school district superintendent. by Gravette, Maribel Childress.
“We do double and triple runs on some of our routes, which may cause students to return home later in the evening, but we want to provide a ride home to all students who need it,” said said Mike McClure, Director of Transportation for Fayetteville Public Schools.
The ripple effect also has an impact on many extracurricular sporting events.
“A lot of these drivers are not available until after 4:45 am, so for all of our sporting events that leave early, we’ll have a hard time finding a driver to pick them up,” said Paw Paw Public Schools Superintendent Rick Reo.
Here are the issues facing school districts:
The national average salary for school bus drivers is $ 17 an hour and they need a commercial driver’s license (CDL) just like a tractor-trailer driver. But on average, truck drivers make $ 24 an hour, and they’re missing out right now as well.
More than half of US schools report ‘severe’ or ‘desperate’ bus driver shortage Source link More than half of US schools report ‘severe’ or ‘desperate’ bus driver shortage
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