Midway ISD desperate to find qualified bus drivers

Posted at 1:16 PM, Aug 30, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-30 14:28:24-04

Midway ISD is desperate to find qualified bus drivers for the 2017-2018 school year.

Corry Crager, the operations director for Midway ISD, said it's normal to be down two or three drivers, but they're double that at the moment.

"We're five to six drivers short and we've had to do other things to off set that," said Crager.

Those changes include combining routes, which makes for longer commutes and more children on a single bus.

"You want students to be comfortable. You don't want the bus overcrowded where they have to sit three to the seat," said Crager. "You don't want the bus route to be extended long, you'd like it to be well under an hour."

Due to the shortage, Midway ISD has raised the pay from 13 dollars an hour to 15 dollars an hour. 

But for some folks, it's not about the cash.

"There are some kids that didn't get a 'good morning'. The goal is to greet every single student as they get on the bus, get to know them," said Steve Umber, a bus driver for Midway ISD.

Umber spent 25 years as a school district administrator before hitting the streets as a bus driver two years ago. 

"After retirement, I got bored very quickly," said Umber. "I thought this would be the perfect thing because it allows me to work with students and it also allows me to have free time in the middle of the day."

Crager said the majority of their drivers are retired and others do it as a second job. Bus drivers for Midway ISD work about two and a half hours in the morning and in the afternoon. 

"This is really an incredibly great job," said Umber.

Midway ISD has around 44 drivers, but Crager said they need to be more in the 50 range.

If you'd like to hop in the driver's seat, you can put in an application here:

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