Shortage of bus drivers continues to be an issue for Rapid City schools

School bus drivers shortage
Published: Oct. 7, 2022 at 3:40 PM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - In August, just days before the new school year was set to begin, Rapid City Area Schools announced the cancellation of several bus routes amid a national driver shortage.

Now, two months later the bus driver shortage continues to impact parents and students.

”It’s still a difficult situation. Part of the challenge of managing that is that the pool of drivers we have is constantly changing, weekly, daily, sometimes by the minute it feels like. And so, as drivers come in, drivers are also going out, so although we have been able to fill some positions, we haven’t really been able to gain ground in terms of the overall pool of drivers,” said Coy Sasse, director of Business and Support Services for Rapid City Area Schools.

According to the RCAS’ job posting website, there are still five open positions for bus drivers.

Helping to ease that driver shortage is the Rapid City Transit System police of offering free bus rides for youths. The transit system reports more than 5,600 trips were taken last month as part of the Youth Ride Free program. Youth ridership is up 25 percent for September when compared to last year’s numbers. The increase can be attributed to Rapid City’s school bus driver shortage.