LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Getting enough drivers to pick up student all across the Clark County School District. CCSD is making a major push to hire more school bus drivers before the school year starts.
“I’m the first face they see in the morning. Sometimes they don’t see their parents’ faces because they’re going to work.”
Kids are what brighten Precious Abrams-Carr’s day as a bus driver with CCSD, making sure they get to campus safe. She feels a sense of responsibility for students.
“We can be the advocate as well," she said. "We can teach them and kind of mold them."
She’s returning to CCSD after taking medical leave. This comes at a time when the district is looking to hire more bus drivers. CCSD officials acknowledge the pandemic has created challenges. During the past school year, buses have been reported late at times picking up and dropping off students. Officials say CCSD still committed to its objective.
“Our focus is always ensuring that every student has access for transportation when they’re eligible to receive this service,” said Amber Rideout, CCSD director of operations for transportation.
The district currently has more than 200 bus driver vacancies to fill, short of the 1,500 drivers needed to be fully staffed. Officials say the bi-weekly job fairs have helped by bringing in between 50 to 100 prospective drivers.
“We are hopeful with the consistent job fairs. We have training classes happening throughout the summer that will be able to reduce that before the first day of school,” Rideout said.
Starting pay for bus drivers also increased by 40 percent to nearly $22 an hour earlier this year so CCSD could be competitive with other transportation agencies. Officials say this is paying some dividends with applicants.
“The feedback that I received from the community has been positive, so yes, that’s been an attribute to having more folks to come out and apply for the position,” Rideout said.
Abrams-Carr says she wouldn’t hesitate getting others on board as a bus driver as they can brighten a student’s day.
“As long as you show authority and they’re willing to show love to them and actually show some kind of gratitude,” she said.
The next job fair will happen at the Arville bus yard on July 23 from 8 a.m. to noon. If you’re interested in applying but can’t make it, you can visit teach.vegas.