Aiken County schools look to hire more bus drivers

Published: Oct. 13, 2022 at 6:24 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

GRANITEVILLE, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) - The Aiken County Public School District says it has more than 40 openings for bus drivers.

On Friday, the district is having a big hiring fair, where they hope to fill the majority of those 47 positions.

The district will give sign-on bonuses and incentives for people to apply. For now, district leaders are in the driver’s seat trying to fill those gaps.

“Just be patient with us. With our driver shortage, we’re doing the best that we can,” said District Training Supervisor Rashad Roland.

Right now, he’s also driving bus routes.

“We are all here, all hands-on deck, including myself and the leadership of our transportation department. We’re driving these routes to ensure students get to and from school,” he said.

The district has about 130 bus drivers but is looking for 47 more.

“We are looking to fill a good bit of those positions as soon as we can,” said Roland.

Filling those positions is crucial as those shortages are making it tough on drivers.

“Our bus drivers, they get tired because they’re doing double and triple routes along with field trips and that kind of thing trying and just working together as a team to get these, our students to where they need to go,” he said.

This also creates difficulty for students.

“It impacts students because some of them are getting to school late, which is delaying learning which we do not like, and then some of them are actually staying at school late on some buses,” he said.

Bus driver shortages are a problem facing many school districts. Roland says competing for qualified drivers is difficult.

“Everybody is trying to get those CDL-qualified drivers, and so we’re all trying to attract those different people and getting them all in and trained to be able to drive a bus,” he said.

While the driver seats are empty, Roland says his door is open for anyone interested in one of these roles.

Roland says he invites anyone interested in a bus driver position to contact him, and he will let them on a bus to try and get a feel for it.