Hamilton’s school boards make headway on bus driver shortage

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Published September 10, 2020 at 7:24 pm

Hamilton’s school boards are reporting that they’re making some headway in the school bus driver shortage, but there are still significant delays to be expected.

Hamilton’s school boards are reporting that they’re making some headway in the school bus driver shortage, but there are still significant delays to be expected.

According to a press release shared Thursday (Sept. 10), the Catholic and public school boards say they have reduced the shortage of drivers from 80 to 59 in the morning and 67 in the afternoon.

“As we increased the number of drivers from last week and reduced the number of bus stops as families opted out of transportation or students learning remotely, we are still in a position where students may experience significant delays,” said Alex Johnstone, Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB) chair.

“We will continue to work hard to find solutions to support families and get students to school on time.”

The boards say that ‘increased driver incentives’ helped to address the issue, as well as a reorganization of routes and runs following the removal by Hamilton-Wentworth Student Transportation Services (HWSTS) of the 2,500 students who have declined transportation and the close to 4,000 eligible student riders who have opted to learn at home, the release says

More reorganization is in the works as schools are expected to welcome back all students by the end of next week.

The release says that parents and student can expect bus pick-up and drop-off times to be updated on the HWSTS website by 6:00 p.m. on September 13, 2020.

“We appreciate the patience and understanding of parents throughout this process and as well would like to thank HWSTS and Board staff who have worked so very hard to prepare for the school reopening during these unprecedented times,” said Patrick Daly, chairperson of the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board (HWCDSB).

Transportation services will be provided to approximately 9,500 students from the HWCDSB and 14,500 students from the HWDSB.

Photo: madame.furie via Flickr

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