Despite driver shortage, Seminole County cleans, prepares buses for first day of school

District says it is short 30 bus drivers

Seminole County officials say they still need more bus drivers, but that's not stopping them from completing preps ahead of the first day of school.
Seminole County officials say they still need more bus drivers, but that's not stopping them from completing preps ahead of the first day of school.

SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. – In less than two weeks, nearly 300 school buses will be hitting the streets to pick up students in Seminole County.

And because we are still dealing with the pandemic, transportation workers said they are making sure each school bus is clean and sanitized to try and keep students safe from the virus.

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“After we do a complete run in the morning, we do a complete cleaning. After we do a complete run in the PM, we do a mist so when the students get on the bus the next day ... they come to a clean bus every day,” Stan McKinzie with Seminole County Public Schools’ Transportation Services said.

McKinzie explained there are a few changes this year. All buses are expected to be at full capacity, which wasn’t the case last school year due to social distancing.

Face masks will be optional for students and bus drivers, but disposable masks will be available on each bus if requested.

News 6 asked how many students will be riding buses this year, but transportation officials said they are still working on getting an exact number though the district is still dealing with a shortage of school bus drivers.

Right now, transportation officials are in the process of hiring 12 drivers but need 30 more even after holding two job fairs this summer.

“It’s a nationwide shortage for bus drivers and our district we are approximately 30 drivers short and one of the things we done is we’ve reduced our routes and we also combined those routes, so we put more students on the bus,” McKinzie said.

Interested applicants can apply to be school bus drivers by clicking here.


About the Author:

Ezzy Castro is a multimedia journalist on News 6's morning team who has a passion for telling the stories of the people in the Central Florida community. Ezzy worked at WFOR CBS4 in South Florida and KBMT in Beaumont, Texas, where she covered Hurricane Harvey in 2017. Being from Miami, Ezzy loves Cuban coffee and croquetas!