It's not easy, but someone has to do it . . . and in the case of the Clinton School District, it is Ashley Kuhns who is tasked with transportation for students to get to and from school, but also the many activities that are scheduled throughout the week too.
We sat down with Mrs. Kuhns and discussed her role.
OS: Are you fully staffed at this point?
AK: No, we are not. It’s something we struggle with every year. Finding people who want to drive is hard, we try our best to overcome this obstacle. As a word of encouragement if you are a parent or grandparent who would want to help out in such an important industry come see us! We are always in need of drivers.
OS: Was is the start of the year a struggle finding bus drivers?
AK: Yes, every year. The beginning of the year is always the biggest hurdle, getting people through training does take time and most new drivers are not out of training by the time the school year starts.
OS: What would you say the biggest hurdle is for you all?
AK: Trying to cover everything short handed. Whether it be short handed for morning or afternoon routes. Then we are adding trips on top of the overextended staff as it is. Getting people in the door and ready to work would be a godsend. Our drivers do amazing work and we just need some more help.
OS: Do you have a hard time finding trip drivers?
AK: Since home to school routes come first if I can't cover a route, I can't do a trip. Also, since a lot of trips don't get back to late in the evening and people's morning routes leave so early a lot of times it's hard to get people to want to take trips.
OS: What could the community do to help?
AK: People could apply to be bus drivers. They could be part-time bus drivers or just trip drivers.
OS: How are your interactions with the school district?
AK: I try to keep the district informed of what's going on at the bus lot whether it's us being short-handed or us covering different things.
OS: What’s the most fulfilling part of your career?
AK: For me, one of the most fulfilling things about being a bus driver to being involved with not only my children but the other children in our community watching them grow and thrive.