School districts short bus drivers, looking for employees

Kent County

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — School districts across West Michigan are facing a shortage of not only teachers but also bus drivers.

Forest Hills Public Schools is hosting a job fair on Saturday to try and fill that need.

Many bus routes in Forest Hills have been canceled so far this school year because the district doesn’t have enough drivers.

The job fair will take place from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the Forest Hills Transportation Department, located at 6001 Hall Street SE.

Leaders with the district say attendees will be able to drive a bus in the parking lot, learn more about the positions available, and talk with current employees.

Jobs are also available for people who may only be able to work on specific days and times.

Todd Sharp, the director of transportation, says he wants people to know that being a school bus driver is meaningful work.

“Driving a school bus is an opportunity to work with children and to have a positive influence with them,” said Sharp. “They’re the first people that they see during the school day and the last ones that they see at night coming and going from home to school and our drivers here take great pride in having a part of their education.”

The starting pay is $17.75 an hour with no experience, plus a $1,500 sign-on bonus.

If you have any questions before the event, you can contact the district’s transportation office at 616.493.8785 or tsharp@fhps.net.

Dean Transportation, Michigan’s largest school transportation system, is also offering sign-on bonuses to fill those spots of up to $750. How much money people qualify for depends on their license.

The company is looking for bus drivers in Battle Creek, Cedar Springs, Comstock Park, Forest Hills, Grand Rapids, Holland, Kalamazoo, Kent City, Kentwood, Lowell, Muskegon, Rockford and Sparta.

They’re also looking to hire bus dispatchers, bus attendants and bus monitors.

You can apply for positions online

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