Bus Driver Shortage Spirals as Covid Remains to Spread


COVID-19 strikes once again. This time, the virus is affecting bus drivers nationwide. 

The reason for the lack of bus drivers at this time varies. The drivers may be those that are getting sick in this situation, but it is also possible that the drivers feel as though they are in danger due to the things they may be exposed to whilst driving.

It seems that most bus drivers are retirees, so they are usually older in age. Concerns for health amongst this group are valid, explaining the sudden lack of drivers.

Drum major Gabriel Lane (12) at Lenoir City High School has experienced the scarcity of bus drivers, as the band director Mr. Huff had to drive the band in the bus to one of their games.

“Due to COVID, there is just a shortage of bus drivers. We are not the only band and only county that has had to deal with the shortage,” Lane said.

Because of the lack of bus drivers, the band had to change their plans very quickly.

“We had to leave at a later time because Mr. Huff had to pick up the bus to drive us, so we had more time to relax and get in the right mindset to perform,” Lane said.

The band was given a little more time to themselves due to having to wait on the bus, an experience Lane feels came with both advantages and disadvantages.

“Sometimes more downtime means we are not ready but sometimes it’s a good thing because we build our group dynamics,” Lane said.

As it is frustrating to have something like this happen, it was not a huge change for the band. 

“[The band is not] used to not having set deadlines because things change on the whim all the time,” Lane said. 

Although COVID seemed to die down a little bit, it still has consequences all these months later. The shortage of bus drivers has been a problem in many school systems now, and it has only continued to worsen.