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Paradise Valley schools latest to see bus driver shortage, looking to make hires

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Bus driver shortage continues to impact school districts across Arizona
Posted at 10:24 AM, Oct 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-18 13:24:05-04

PARADISE VALLEY, AZ — Like other districts across Arizona, the Paradise Valley School District is experiencing a school bus driver shortage.

RELATED: Peoria Unified School District approves $3-per-hour raise for bus drivers

Last week, the district posted on its Facebook page that some children riding the bus home would be experiencing a 45-minute delay.

Transportation Director for PVSchools Brandon George says delay time have varied. He says on days where they have a high volume of call outs, they have drivers doubling and tripling their routes.

"We try to communicate with the parents, schools, principals. We try to reach out to them immediately. My staff is typically in the office as early as 4:45 in the morning trying to pick up all students on time. We try to put that communication out to see if we can get any type of assistance from parents who can drive their students in," said George.

George says many drivers left their jobs during the pandemic, and that is now why they are experiencing a shortage. He says the district currently has 73 school bus drivers and they are in need of 37 more.

Paradise Valley is the latest to join other districts, like Peoria and Dysart, in having driver staffing shortages. Both West Valley districts have recently approved boosts in driver pay in hopes of attracting more candidates.

If you would like to learn more about becoming a bus driver for PVSchools, click here.