Nationwide shortage of bus drivers also reflected locally

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 4:56 PM EDT
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HERMON, Maine (WABI) -The town of Hermon is experiencing a shortage of bus drivers, and they’re not the only ones.

“It’s a challenge everywhere that I hear. Bangor, Hampden, Old Town...our bus drivers are amazing. Like most places everywhere we do not have enough of them.”

Hermon School District Superintendent Jim Chasse says bus ridership is down during the pandemic as more parents are opting to drop kids off themselves, but they still come up short.

“We are fortunate that sometimes our custodian and sometimes our transportation director can fill in. We also have a van we can drive and that doesn’t require a bus license and we currently have an ed tech who has stepped up to the plate for us and is filling in that role.”

Applicants have to enroll in a training program that takes a few weeks.

“Take an exam and learn the ropes, but it isn’t that intimidating.”

The job is generally part time, but some schools offer positions that are full-time.

“You do typically a morning and an afternoon bus run. It’s a great retirement job. Veterans that are interested in doing that we could use your help.”

Chasse says he’s considering becoming a bus driver himself when he retires.

“You start the students day. So if you’re getting on the bus right now it’s “Good morning!” You set the tone of the day.”

You can find out more about job openings in Hermon here.

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