Jones County Faces Bus Driver Shortage - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

Jones County Faces Bus Driver Shortage

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With classes back in session, the Jones County School District seems to be off to a great start, but the county faces a bus driver shortage.

JCSD Transportation Director Terry Graham said they are not in panic mode yet.

"We want to try to hurry up and get folks before we get that far and deep in trouble," he said. 

He said approximately 6,000 students ride the bus, and there are 137 regular route buses in the district.

They try to keep the maximum capacity at 50, but with those numbers, they're cutting it close.

Graham said he believes this is a universal shortage that is not only affecting Jones County.

"I think it's because the job is tough," Graham said.  "You have to multi-task. You get up early. It's hot, and you've got a lot of students in your care."

However, he said the job can be rewarding in that bus drivers have the opportunity to bond with the students.

Graham said he would like to recruit from within the school district since the kids would already be familiar with their bus driver.

"But if that's not possible, we're going to get anybody that can qualify to drive the bus," Graham said.  "They have to be drug tested, criminal background check, be eligible for a commercial."

He said anyone interested in becoming a bus driver should call the Bus Barn at 601-426-9174 or stop by their office on 711 Hillcrest Dr. 

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