TRUMANN, AR (KAIT) - The Trumann School District is currently at a roadblock with finding bus drivers for their students, and they are now recruiting teachers to learn how to drive a bus.
"I know across the nation and especially here in Arkansas, there is a shortage of bus drivers but especially here where we are kind of in a crisis situation," said Brandie Williams, assistant superintendent.
Williams said they currently have 12 routes and eight drivers.
"Two of our drivers are part-time so who is driving the other routes? We have to double up on routes to where coaches are driving, our transportation director is driving a bus, and now the superintendent is doing a tour in the district, going campus to campus to get teachers on board with trying to help," said Williams.
Williams said one person would be a major relief to them, but she understands it can be difficult to commit.
"It is a part-time job and I know the hours can be hard with having to get up early in the morning and then be back at it in the afternoon," said Williams. "There are also a lot of kids in the mornings and afternoons too so yes we would need someone willing to help and willing to be there to get these kids home safely."
Williams said with this shortage it is also difficult on the staff at hand.
"It makes teachers stay longer watching these kids," said Williams. "Principals. Parents are calling asking why is my baby not home yet and we want them home on time but we can only do what we can do. We want to do everything to make sure our buses are not overcrowded and that they get home in a timely manner."
Williams said over 50% of the student population, (1,600 students) ride the bus to and from school.
She said she encourages anyone interested to reach out to them on their website at www.trumannwildcat.com or call their central office at (870) 483-6444.
"We will even offer the training and pay for the tests if you pass as a bus driver," said Williams. "Our transportation director is really good about training people and taking them on bus routes. Yes, we will use our own money but we are willing to do whatever it takes."
Williams said soon there will be signs posted throughout the city and on school buses for anyone wanting more information.
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