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No seats left on the bus: District 49 students put on a waitlist due to driver shortage

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
work."

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.

Colorado Springs / Economy / Education / Video
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Spencer Soicher

Spencer is a reporter for KRDO. Learn more about him here.

Comments

8 Comments

  1. You pay a burger flipper $17 an hour and expect a person with a CDL, the responsibity of 50 children and a split shift day to work for the same amount or even less. How you fix this? Offer a one time $1000 sign on bonus. Did Amazon not just offer a $3000 one for stuffing boxes or driving a small delivery van?

  2. Well school bus drivers are a Federally funded program. Because they are federally funded, they are mandated to enforce that all school bus drivers (and p@ssengers) are required to be vaccinated. This certainly further hindered this job hiring as well. So even if the schools are not mandating the federal mask mandates, the school busses are mandating them, according to the information released on the KRDO’s radio channel.
    Low pay + less than 40 HPW + federally mandated requirements = vacant jobs

    1. You really didn’t even look into school bus funding before you posted a extremely ignorant comment. wow

  3. 01010100 01101000 01100001 01110100 00100000 01100110 01110101 01101110 01100100 01101001 01101110 01100111 00100000 01101111 01101110 01101100 01111001 00100000 01100011 01101111 01110110 01100101 01110010 01110011 00100000 01110100 01101000 01100101 00100000 01101001 01101110 01101001 01110100 01100001 01101100 00100000 01100100 01110010 01101001 01110110 01100101 01110010 01110011 00100000 01110100 01110010 01100001 01101001 01101110 01101001 01101110 01100111 00101100 00100000 01101110 01101111 01110100 00100000 01110000 01101111 01110011 01110100 00101101 01110100 01110010 01100001 01101001 01101110 01101001 01101110 01100111 00100000 01101111 01110000 01100101 01110010 01100001 01110100 01101001 01101111 01101110 01110011 00101110 00100000 00100000 01011001 01101111 01110101 01110010 00100000 01110011 01100101 01100011 01101111 01101110 01100100 00100000 01110011 01100101 01101110 01110100 01100101 01101110 01100011 01100101 00100000 01101001 01110011 00100000 01101001 01101110 01100011 01101111 01110010 01110010 01100101 01100011 01110100 00100000 00101101 00100000 01101001 01110100 00100000 01101001 01110011 00100000 01100011 01110101 01110010 01110010 01100101 01101110 01110100 01101100 01111001 00100000 01001001 01001100 01001100 01000101 01000111 01000001 01001100 00100000 01110100 01101111 00100000 01100001 01100100 01101101 01101001 01101110 01101001 01110011 01110100 01100101 01110010 00100000 01100001 00100000 01000011 01001111 01010110 01001001 01000100 00100000 01110110 01100001 01100011 01100011 01101001 01101110 01100101 00100000 01110100 01101111 00100000 01100011 01101000 01101001 01101100 01100100 01110010 01100101 01101110 00100000 01111001 01101111 01110101 01101110 01100111 01100101 01110010 00100000 01110100 01101000 01100001 01101110 00100000 00110001 00110010 00101100 00100000 01110111 01101000 01101001 01100011 01101000 00100000 01100011 01101111 01101110 01110011 01110100 01101001 01110100 01110101 01110100 01100101 00100000 01110100 01101000 01100101 00100000 01101101 01100001 01101010 01101111 01110010 01101001 01110100 01111001 00100000 01101111 01100110 00100000 01110011 01100011 01101000 01101111 01101111 01101100 00100000 01100010 01110101 01110011 00100000 01110010 01101001 01100100 01100101 01110010 01110011 00101110 00100000 00100000 01010100 01101000 01100101 00100000 01000011 01000100 01000011 00100000 01101000 01100001 01110011 00100000 01101110 01101111 01110100 00100000 01101101 01100001 01101110 01100100 01100001 01110100 01100101 01100100 00100000 01000011 01001111 01010110 01001001 01000100 00100000 01110110 01100001 01100011 01100011 01101001 01101110 01100001 01110100 01101001 01101111 01101110 01110011 00100000 01100110 01101111 01110010 00100000 01100101 01110110 01100101 01110010 01111001 01101111 01101110 01100101 00100000 01101111 01101110 00100000 01100001 00100000 01110011 01100011 01101000 01101111 01101111 01101100 00100000 01100010 01110101 01110011 00111011 00100000 01110100 01101000 01100101 01111001 00100000 01101000 01100001 01110110 01100101 00100000 01101101 01100001 01101110 01100100 01100001 01110100 01100101 01100100 00100000 01110100 01101000 01100001 01110100 00100000 01100101 01110110 01100101 01110010 01111001 01101111 01101110 01100101 00100000 01101111 01101110 00100000 01100001 00100000 01110011 01100011 01101000 01101111 01101111 01101100 00100000 01100010 01110101 01110011 00100000 01110111 01100101 01100001 01110010 00100000 01100001 00100000 01101101 01100001 01110011 01101011 00101100 00100000 01110010 01100101 01100111 01100001 01110010 01100100 01101100 01100101 01110011 01110011 00100000 01101111 01100110 00100000 01110110 01100001 01100011 01100011 01101001 01101110 01100001 01110100 01101001 01101111 01101110 00100000 01110011 01110100 01100001 01110100 01110101 01110011 00101100 00100000 01100001 01101110 01100100 00100000 01110010 01100101 01100111 01100001 01110010 01100100 01101100 01100101 01110011 01110011 00100000 01101111 01100110 00100000 01110100 01101000 01100101 00100000 01101101 01100001 01110011 01101011 00100000 01110000 01101111 01101100 01101001 01100011 01111001 00100000 01100001 01110100 00100000 01110011 01100011 01101000 01101111 01101111 01101100 00101110 00001010 (wish I knew what the triggers are!)

    On a side note, the only school transportation that the Federal government requires to be made available is for special needs students. It’s up to State and Local authorities to determine school transportation availability for the remaining students.

    1. Thank you for the correction. I wish the moderator would allow a warning message to appear advising what word violated their policy so we could correct the problem. The issue is words like 01100011 01101111 01101110 01110011 01110100 01101001 01110100 01110101 01100101 01101110 01110100
      or
      01000011 01101111 01101110 01110011 01110100 01101001 01110100 01110101 01110100 01101001 01101111 01101110
      have made the banned list for some reason as well

  4. “Tanner isn’t comfortable letting her 10-year-old walk three miles to work..”
    To Work? Ride a school bus to work? Wow this should of been an easy mistake to find…..lol

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