RCSD Superintendent speaks about first day of school amid bus driver shortage

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Rochester City School District Superintendent Dr. Lesli Myers-Small held a briefing Thursday afternoon about the first day of classes in the district.

The district welcomed most students back to in-person learning Thursday morning, but hundreds were left home after 12 bus drivers resigned in the preceding days.

In the latest briefing, Myers-Small said no more bus drivers resigned Thursday. She said 100 people have applied to fill the positions, and 39 people are training to take the road test.

The district has eliminated the walker-bus program for students at three schools who live within 1.5 miles of the schools. The Rochester-Genesee Regional Transportation Authority board approved a temporary change to their bus schedules to bus thousands of additional RCSD students, picking up some of the slack.

Hundreds of students remain without transportation, and are taking part in remote learning options until a solution can be found. According to district officials, there are still 23 vacancies within the RCSD bus garage.

Rep. Joe Morelle (D-25) is calling on the Secretary of Transportation to waive the Commercial Drivers License requirement for school bus drivers in order to help with hiring. He’s asking for the creation of a specific school bus license in place of the CDL.

Watch the full press briefing

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