Bus driver shortage continues to challenge area districts

Maumee City Schools Transportation Supervisor Mary Bottoni is thankful her district doesn’t face the same hiring challenges as larger neighboring ones.

Some districts have had bus driver shortages so extreme that officials were forced to cancel routes last-minute or schedule remote learning days, keeping kids at home. But the Maumee district faces its own challenges. Before the start of the 2020-21 school year, three bus drivers left. For a department of 18 drivers, that accounted for a more than 16 percent decrease.

Elsewhere, school district leaders describe staffing levels so low they struggle to operate all bus routes.

Like Maumee, many are relying on custodial and cafeteria staff to pitch in and get behind the wheel.

But even that isn’t always enough, and district officials find themselves in the unenviable position of having to tell parents at the last minute that they are on their own for transporting their children.

 

Read the full story in the Toledo Blade