Sioux Falls in need of more school bus drivers

Published: Jul. 22, 2021 at 6:16 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Kevin Robertson has been a bus driver for almost two years and says he loves it.

“The excitement of driving the bus is basically for that precious cargo that is those kids, it gives you a chance to really talk to them learn about them, help them through their lives, be a positive influence on their life,” said Robertson

This feeling is shared with many of his co-workers, and this year School Bus Inc. is going to need more people who feel this way.

“We are opening a new middle school and a new high school here in Sioux Falls this fall, we’re very excited about that and happy to be a part of that, however that’s created the need for additional buses and additional drivers to drive those buses,” said Steve Hey, School Bus Inc. Vice President of Business Development.

Hey, says before the start of the school year they would like an additional 30 drivers, to cover all the bus routes needed. The COVID-19 pandemic has also contributed to the shortage of drivers.

“We had a number of drivers who did not come back to us last fall because of concerns over the pandemic, so we’re continuing to need additional hiring to replace those drivers, we hope that some of them will have been vaccinated to join us this fall,” said Hey.

With the labor shortage happening across the country, School Bus Inc. is also competing with other industries in trying to get more workers. But no matter how short on drivers they are, they have a plan.

“Everyone in our maintenance shop is licensed to drive, and almost everyone in the office including me, so when the need arises to cover routes all of our staff is very accustomed to stepping up and filling that void so we can make sure to get all of our routes covered and get all of those kids to school,” said Hey.

School Bus Inc. expects the need for more drivers to continue in the future. They have taken steps to help recruit more people including hiring bonuses and retention bonuses.

More information about School Bus Inc. can be found by clicking here.

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