NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Fifteen drivers are needed within one month for the Mesquite School District.
The Richardson School system reports a shortage of 30 drivers.
The Fort Worth Independent School District’s effort to recruit and hire bus drivers includes a bonus offer of $500 for those agreeing to drive buses for the district.
Throughout the DFW area, local school districts find themselves competing for a pool of bus drivers in high demand.
“The biggest challenge has been finding enough drivers , bringing them in-house as RISD employees,” Richardson ISD spokesman Tim Clark noted Tuesday. RISD, along with Dallas, Irving, Lancaster and others have created their own student transportation departments this year.
The now defunct Dallas County Schools provided student bus service for 10 school districts, until voters approved the shut down of the public agency. DSC assets were sold, including buses, and the former contracted school districts, which spent millions on transportation services, now prepare to transport children on their own, if they can find drivers.
Dallas ISD will need 800 drivers by August. Dallas ISD is offering six-hour work days and a longer bus service school year to potential drivers. anywhere you go there’s a driver shortage.
“This is crunch time for us right now. We are really pushing to get people. Nationwide, there is a 10 percent shortage. It takes creative and innovative ideas to recruit new drivers,” Dr. Kayne Smith, Dallas ISD Student Transportation Services said.
Dallas ISD will hold bus driver job fairs Thursday and Friday.
The district still needs approximate 150 more drivers for the 35,000 children bussed daily to school and home.