Another school year is right around the corner as challenges surrounding bussing continues.
A nationwide shortage of drivers with CDL’s has created problems for school districts across Northern Michigan last year and could continue this school year.
Traverse City Area Public Schools last year had to partner with the Bay Area Transportation Authority to help provide bussing for students. TCAPS Superintendent Dr. John Vanwagoner said while they do have a ride for every student, they are at “the bare minimum.”
“We would hire 15 drivers right now if we could find them,” Dr. Vanwagoner admitted.
Vanwagoner said he and other staff have gotten their CDL’s and will be able to step in if needed. However, TCAPS will be partnering with BATA to help with congestion and ensure every student has a ride to and from school.
“We have a ride for every kid right now. [This is] a backup, but we know by BATA taking some of that demand it will help some of our crowded buses,” Vanwagoner explained.
He said the partnership with BATA worked out well last year and will continue it “into the future.”