BALTIMORE — The national bus driver shortage is creating speed bumps in getting kids to school across our area.
In Baltimore City parents are scrambling to create a personalized transportation plan because their kids have been left at the bus stop since the first day of school last week.
In a stagnant, a spokesperson for the district said they are working with taxi companies to get drivers to come back and drive for city schools and holding certification classes to get drivers ready.
In the meantime parents are having to figure out a different route to get kids to school.
“His first day of school when we left at 7 o’clock the bus never showed,” said Dionne Reed.
On the first day of school in Baltimore City 30 bus drivers called out.
Since then many parents are still making their own arrangements to get their kids to school— and constantly calling to find out when they can expect transportation for their children.
“They basically explained to me because of everything that’s going on with no bus drivers shortages and everything, they were back to square one with my son,” Reed said. “He’s still assigned to a bus but there’s no bus driver for the bus.”
Reed doesn’t drive and said her son has an Individualized Education Program that requires the district provide transportation for him.
“You’re breaking federal law, what is going to be done about this?” Reed asked.
The district is exploring changing routes and the possibility of using other state approved alternative vehicles.
The district is also offering a $250 stipend to families for transportation for September.
This is causing a big and unexpected stress on parents who thought they had transportation taken care of for their kids.
Now they are hearing they must figure it out— and that their kid may not have a ride for the rest of the year.
“I’m like okay well what about parents that have to pay people to take their kids back and fourth to school? No one wants to hear I gotta wait for Baltimore City to give me the stipend to pay you to take my kids to school,” said Reed
Last week we ran a story on a similar situation that a woman and her son were dealing with.
She tells me she was able to secure transportation through the district a week after we aired the story.