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Bus Drivers Needed Immediately... Each school bus driver is an essential employee with a very important job to accomplish as well as an important member of the educational team. Drivers have more contact with the public than most other school employees since large numbers of students are transported by each driver each day. A school bus driver is usually the first and last adult (outside of the family) the student sees each day; and consequently, each driver can and should play a major role in the development of students’ attitudes about schooling. It is essential that school bus drivers establish good rapport with students, colleagues (all school employees), and members of the school community The transportation of children via school buses has been popular since the 1930s, and continues to be a widely used medium of transportation. The demand for quality bus drivers is rising at a steady pace. Our District is in dire need of community members who are willing to drive a bus, whether this is a full time route or a part-time sub. Community members make quality drivers because they know the area and many of the families that they support when they transport their children.

School bus transportation is safe, practical and economical for thousands of children to travel to and from school. Parents are busier than ever and having the school bus as a transportation option, is extremely valuable. With gas prices constantly shifting, more and more kids are traveling via bus to school every year.

Here are some reasons why you should consider becoming a school bus driver:

1. You Have Great People Skills. Having strong communication skills is a must for all bus drivers. A career as a bus driver means being around different types of people every day. This can include teachers, parents, school officials and of course, kids! Empathy and understanding is a must when it comes to helping anxious children or concerned parents. Being able to communicate and understand all types of personalities are important traits for successful bus drivers.

2. You Enjoy Working with Kids. If you love kids, a career as a bus driver could be very rewarding. Having the ability to make the children feel comfortable is just as important as knowing how to drive the bus. The duties of a school bus driver aren’t just confined to driving. You become an important and steady person in these young children’s lives. Each day gives you the opportunities to get a child’s day started off right and remind them that they are special and important.

3. You Care about the Safety of Children. Fortunately, the number of school bus accidents per year is very small. This is because of careful drivers who make the safety of their passengers their top priority. Quality drivers make sure to monitor onboard conduct and see that the kids make it into their homes. They also enforce safe board and de-board procedures on a daily basis. The ability to balance concentration between the road and the onboard conduct of kids is a unique skill needed for the job. Putting the safety of children above all else is the most important aspect of the job. In fact, bus drivers are the most highly trained, tested and scrutinized drivers on the road, ensuring students are picked up and arrive at school on time, and return home safely every school day. Bus drivers are also the “neighborhood watch” of the community. They can very quickly see when things are out of place or not normal.

4. A Flexible Schedule is a Plus. A typical bus driver usually works early in the morning then later in the afternoon with a long break in-between. There are also several opportunities to pick up extra hours, as well as receive employee benefits from the school. You will often see bus drivers pick up other positions within the school like subbing in other areas. There is also the option of driving to and from field trips or other school activities for extra hours. A bus driving career could be the ideal solution if you’re trying to avoid the ordinary 9 to 5 job. If you have children, it also affords you the opportunity to be on a school calendar schedule while still receiving pay and benefits throughout the summer.

5. Looking for a Job with Benefits. More and more often, the term “work-life balance” is becoming an important factor in job searches. Certain benefits offered in your career are important in maintaining this balance. Our drivers, even though contracted for only 4 hours a day, receive the opportunity for health care and dental benefits, personal days, and sick leave. Drivers are also afforded the opportunity to receive retirement benefits from a state supported retirement system after becoming vested. Drivers who are a part of the bargaining unit can receive free online college through the OAPSE unit for not only themselves but their spouse, children, and the employee’s parents.

6. No Interest in a Four-Year Degree. Starting a school bus career doesn’t require spending four years in college. Every driver must go through a training program and receive their CDL before employment. No prior bus driving experience is needed in order to begin the training.

7. You Can’t Afford Training. School bus drivers are essential employees with a very important job to accomplish. Our District will cover their drivers’ official bus training programs to ensure top-quality employees. Besides general driving practices and vehicle maintenance, the training program teaches important safety rules and emergency procedures.

It’s easy to forget how something as simple as being a school bus driver can impact the lives of students, parents, teachers, and community members. However, having quality local drivers with an understanding of our children, where they come from and what they need most, makes all the difference in the educational environment which we are all working to support. We want to be able to continue this responsive nature to students and parents through having a pool of quality drivers available for routes, field trips, and extracurricular. Our priority is getting students to school safely. We want this to be done with our drivers and with little inconvenience to our families.

If you know of someone who would like to drive, please contact our office at (419) 895-1700, ext. 17000 or 17012 for more information.