Kettering schools has ‘dire’ need to fill 20-plus bus driver jobs, offering paid training, benefits

Kettering City Schools has Immediate openings for bus drivers. FILE
Kettering City Schools has Immediate openings for bus drivers. FILE

Credit: FILE

Credit: FILE

KETTERING – Kettering City Schools has immediate openings for bus drivers, a situation its head of transportation calls “dire.”

Kettering is looking to fill 23 driving jobs, Todd Silverthorn, the district’s transportation supervisor, said this week.

The district now has 67 bus drivers and typically 71 routes in a school year, Silverthorn said..

Asked if any routes are going unfilled, he said, “That is a daily change. It depends on how many staff we have that are out absent. So those numbers fluctuate daily.”

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Many area school districts have faced similar problems in recent months as the option for in-person classes has become available in the COVID-19 pandemic. But Kettering officials have said the district had bus driver shortages before the coronavirus.

A recent national school transportation study published by hopskipdrive.com found more than 78% of respondents said the bus driver shortage was a problem.

“We are currently filling all of our staffing needs with our mechanics, our office staff, any of our currently hired in substitutes and pretty much right now it’s all hands on deck,” Silverthorn said.

Bus drivers are required to get a Commercial Driver’s License before working. For those without their CDL, Kettering is offering paid training.

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It is also offering from $18.44 to $23.77 per hour, full benefits and guaranteeing 22.5 hours per week, according to its website.

Interviews will be held Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Kettering Transportation Department, 2640 Wilmington Pike, next to Beavertown Elementary School.

The department’s phone number is 937-499-1770. But stopping in and filling out an application is recommend, as the department does not accept online applications, Silverthorn said.

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