Massachusetts National Guard to help school districts impacted by school bus driver shortage

BOSTON — As school districts across the U.S. are facing bus driver shortages, one state is tapping the National Guard to help.

Starting Tuesday, Sept. 14, nearly 100 members of the Massachusetts National Guard will begin training sessions to serve as school bus drivers and assist communities impacted by school bus driver shortages.

According to a statement released by the office of public safety and security of Massachusetts Gov. Charles D. Baker, 90 Guard members will "prepare for service in Chelsea, Lawrence, Lowell and Lynn" and up to 250 personnel will be available for the assignment.

"These Guard personnel will be available to serve as drivers of school transport vans known as 7D vehicles to address staffing shortages in certain districts," the statement read. "All activated Guard personnel will complete vehicle training to ensure the safety of children and families."

The statement also said that the National Guard will comply with all health and safety measures.

Other states experiencing school bus driver shortages include Pennsylvania, Virginia, Missouri, Ohio and Texas. While the reasons for the shortage are varied, Curt Macysyn executive director for the National School Transportation Association, which represents private school bus contractors, told ABC News in August that health concerns amid the COVID-19 pandemic have played a role.

"During COVID, people chose their health over a position," Macysyn said. "With the delta variant, I think some folks who might have considered a return are probably gonna stay on the sidelines a bit longer."

For now, Macsyn said parents are being forced to find alternative modes of transportation to get their kids to school each morning, such as having family members take them, carpooling, or having students walk or bike. At the same time, schools are having to consolidate or remove routes.

On Air102.5 The Bone - Real. Raw. Radio. Logo

    The Latest BoneTV On Demand

    This September, Riverside Recovery and CMG will partner for National Recovery Month. Together, we will break the stigma and increase awareness and understanding of mental and substance abuse disorders.

    Hang with Bone Fantasy Live featuring Johnny B, Mike O, and Ben Swig as they go live each Sunday from 11am - 1pm

    Drew and John had local artists design their own custom shirts and you can pick one up for a $50 donation to the Down Syndrome Association of Tampa Bay!

    Swimming is a great recreational sport that can be enjoyed by people of all ages, especially here in Florida. But it’s important to know how to be safe while you’re in the water.

    mobile apps

    Everything you love about and more! Tap on any of the buttons below to download our app.

    amazon alexa

    Enable our Skill today to listen live at home on your Alexa Devices!