Minnesota School Districts Scramble Amid Bus Driver Shortage
ST. PAUL (AP) — Minnesota school administrators and busing companies are scrambling to get students to class on time amid a shortage of school bus drivers.
Tom Burr is responsible for moving 32,000 students on 350 bus routes for the St. Paul school district. Burr tells Minnesota Public Radio News that he's 15 to 20 percent short on drivers.
Burr says it's a domino effect that causes the district to backfill drivers with typically full-time staff, such as mechanics and trainers.
Shelly Jonas of the Minnesota School Bus Operators Association says school districts across the state are facing bus driver shortages as the strong economy and low unemployment make it difficult to find workers to fill the roles. She said many private school bus companies aren't attracting new hires through traditional methods.