FALCON, Colo.(KRDO)-- The looming bus driver shortage, that Falcon School District 49 warned of earlier this summer, is now coming to a head.
A representative from the district says they were not able to get enough drivers before the start of the school year to accommodate every student that needs a ride. Now, students can't even apply for transportation. Instead, they'll be put on a waitlist.
A spokesperson for the district says the waitlist is, "pretty extensive."
The District 49 website says, "Due to some of our buses being at capacity we currently have disabled our application for transportation at this time. Please contact our office at 719-495-1159 to be put on a waiting list."
One parent, Amber Tanner, says she has had children enrolled in District 49 for 12 years. Still, her child is on the waitlist now, and she says she didn't find out until the first day of school.
Tanner says she and her husband both work, and it's not possible for her to pick up her 5th grader, and still keep her job.
"It's a major inconvenience," Tanner says. "I don't have a lot of family down here, my parents live in the mountains, and I can't just ask them to inconvenience their lives to get my kids to and from school."
On July 7, District 49 announced they would offer new drivers a $1,000 signing bonus, money for training to get a commercial driver's license, and an increased salary of $16.29 per hour.
But if that didn't attract enough drivers, Tanner thinks the district needs to offer more.
"Find a solution for us because this needs to be fixed. If McDonald's is offering $17 per hour, then I think the district can come up just a little bit, maybe to $19 even, because that's going to push more people to go back to
Tanner isn't comfortable letting her 10-year-old walk three miles to work, and she's frustrated she didn't know about the shortage before school started this week.
"It would have been nice to get an email or a text message, weeks ago, letting us know the situation because then we could have tried to find out a way to fix it back a couple of weeks ago, not the day school starts," Tanner said.