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Poudre School District grapples with a shortage of bus drivers

Now hiring bus drivers.jpg
Tess Novotny
/
KUNC
A sign advertising school bus driver jobs hangs at Dunn IB World School in Fort Collins.

It’s no secret that a massive worker shortage is hurting multiple industries in Colorado and around the country. In this state, while about 80% of the over 300,000 jobs lost in the start of the pandemic have returned, everywhere from restaurants to farms to sports stadiums are seeing holes in staffing.

One industry that hasn’t been spared is transportation. And it’s not just city buses and trains running with fewer routes and operators, but school buses. The Poudre School District, which covers areas including Fort Collins, Laporte and Timnath, is operating with significantly fewer drivers than previous years. And everyone from drivers to students and parents are feeling the impact.

PSD director of transportation, Jake Bell, and district school bus driver, Jessica Bard, joined Colorado Edition to talk about the impact of the worker shortage and possible solutions.

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As a radio producer, I help make the Colorado Edition program come to life. I help to schedule guests, produce interviews, edit audio, and write for our weekly newsletter.
As host of KUNC's Colorado Edition, I work closely with our producers and reporters to bring context and diverse perspectives to the important issues of the day. And because life is best when it's a balance of work and play, I love finding stories that highlight culture, music, the outdoors, and anything that makes Colorado such a great place to live.