School Bus Drivers in Short Supply


As the school year approaches, some coast districts are desperately searching for school bus drivers.

In Ocean Springs, for example, the district parked a bus in a prominent area and put a banner on it to draw attention to the problem. It did help. Assistant Principal Pat Joachim says all the positions are now filled. But business manager Bonnie Grainger says some openings will likely develop later in the year as drivers get sick or move away.

Pascagoula schools are looking for five bus drivers. Moss Point schools are looking for three, and Jackson County School District is looking for eight.

School officials say reasons for the shortage of drivers include low pay and a commercial license requirement. Bus drivers must have a commercial drivers license and pass a state certification test, a drug test and a criminal background check.