NewsCovering Kentucky


Lexington woman encourages more people to apply for bus driver jobs given the shortage

Posted at 6:30 PM, Aug 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-19 22:08:56-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Just a week after four bus routes in Fayette County were cancelled, twice that many were cancelled on Thursday morning.

The reason is the same as last week -- a shortage of bus drivers. Now a parent in Lexington wants to help fix the issue herself.

"I want to start a new career path," she said. "Something that I've wanted to do for a while."

We are not identifying her, as she is still in the application process to be a bus driver with the Fayette County Public Schools. She's a parent who wants to see our children get the best education possible.

"Children are our future," she said. "We need to make sure they get the proper education. They need to know they can depend on adults to get that education."

Last week, we heard from school leaders who said it is important for parents to have a plan if their route is cancelled. This applicant says we need to take a closer look at why more drivers are necessary.

"If it means being a bus driver to take a child to school, you're helping to shape their future," she said.

Regarding Thursday's cancelled routes, we brought some questions to a FCPS spokesperson.

"This morning, there were 27 drivers absent. So we were not able to come up with a solution for eight of our buses," said Lisa Deffendall, a spokesperson for FCPS. "That led to us cancelling eight buses. When the first call comes in, we work to move routes around and we work to move routes around. Our goal is always to do everything that we can."

The applicant says she also feels it's important for kids to be in school. As for COVID-19, following the guidelines can make sure kids have a way to get to school.

"I feel like if we follow the guidelines, people don't need to fear COVID -- of catching COVID from these children," she said. "The children deserve to go to school. They want to go to school."

She encourages other people to think deeper about the issue and how they can play a role.

"It's not about the money," she said. "It's about doing something that I feel would be rewarding not only for myself but also the children of the community, the children of this county."

Deffendall says there are 22 drivers who are near the end of their training or are waiting for their licenses to come in. She added that 15 people were selected and interviewed at a recent job fair who will begin a bus driver class later this month.

If you want to apply for a bus driver position with the Fayette County Public Schools, click here.