In just two weeks, kids will be hopping on the bus for their first day of school.
But one bus company says it's rushing to fill a number of open positions for drivers.
Kevin Hansen of School Bus Inc., which operates bus routes for Sioux Falls, the state's largest school district, said he has a shortage of drivers.
For anyone who needs a good part-time job, a school bus driver might seem like a good way to make some extra cash. It's only a few hours a day, with weekends off, but for this job, you have to spend money to make money.
It's already tough to be a school bus driver, you have to get a special Commercial Driver's License (CDL), pass a background check and physicals.
"They've also added sleep apnea test that if you're, they use a body mass indicator, that if you're 35 percent over your weight, which is expensive," Hansen said.
The regulations require bus driver to fall under a 35 percent BMI. If you are under, you're fine. But if not, you only have two choices, lose the weight or take an expensive sleep apnea test.
That test can cost as much as $2500, an expensive requirement for a part-time job.
Hansen of School Bus Inc. says it's hard enough getting people in the door to apply.
"They're more interested in what the sleep study costs, who's going to pay for it and if they can afford it. Why they should have to spend all that time and energy to get a CDL," Hansen said.
Hansen said one way or another, he'll make sure the busses are staffed on the first day of school. He plans on calling up past bus drivers, as well as asking friends if anyone needs a job, provided they have a commercial licenses and they have the right BMI index.
The Sioux Falls School District says it is working with School Bus Inc. on scheduling routes. If the worst occurs and it doesn't have enough drivers, it will combine routes. However, the district said it will make sure none of the busses are overloaded with kids.
If you would like to apply for a job with School Bus Inc., call 605-334-6644.
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