Del. Faces Shortage Of School Bus Drivers

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Delaware school bus drivers are in demand, with a new school year just weeks away.

According to the Delaware Department of Education, local districts and charter schools are getting few new applicants to meet a shortage of bus drivers. The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated the shortage, because the age of many drivers put them at higher risk.

Bus aides are also needed who would assist with special transportation requirements for students.

The Division of Motor Vehicles has agreed to streamline the process by quickly scheduling road tests and accepting S endorsements from other states once the school bus drivers meet the Delaware training requirements. The state will offer a stipend to applicants who complete training and become fully licensed to be a school bus driver.

Interested applicants may contact the Department of Education Transportation Office.

The Delaware Department of Education released these requirements for becoming a school bus driver:

Qualifications to become a School Bus Drivers

o   Must be 18 years or older

o   Obtain a CDL

§  Individual will have to study the CDL manual and pass knowledge test at DMV to receive permit

§  Districts/Employers will provide trainers to teach the skills needed to past the road test at DMV

o   Complete a Delaware School Bus Driver Background Check

o   Complete Child Protection Registry

o   Pre-Employment Drug Testing

o   Delaware School Bus Driver Physical (w/tb screening)

o   Complete Behind the Wheel Training

o   Attend Delaware School Bus Driver Training School 2-day class (Offered in each county monthly)

o   Disqualifying Factors

§  Not have more than five (5) points (full point value) on the applicant’s three (3) year driving record. NOTE: Recalculated points and the Defensive Driving Course three (3) point credits do not apply to (S) endorsement holders in meeting this requirement.

§  Not have had the applicant’s license suspended, revoked or disqualified in this State or any other jurisdiction for moving violations in the last five (5) years. This five (5) year period will begin from the date the suspension, revocation or disqualification has been cleared. Certified driving records from other jurisdictions may be requested from these applicants for the DMV to verify compliance with this section.

§  Never been convicted of any crime under the laws of this State or any other jurisdiction as specified in 21 Del.C§2708(b)(7).

Qualifications to become a School Bus Aide

o   Must be 18 years or older

o   Attend Delaware School Bus Driver/Aide Training (Offered in each county monthly)

o   Complete a Public School Employee background check

o   Complete Child Protection Registry

o   Pre-Employment Drug Testing

o   School Bus Aide Physical (w/TB screening)

Those interested in becoming a School Bus Driver/Aide can contract the DDOE, Transportation Office at (302) 857-3390 or via email DOESchool.Transportation@doe.k12.de.us.   

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