Many children in our school system rely on buses to get to and from school each day. With that in mind, the School Board listened as company general manager Tonia Radar gave an annual transportation report over Durham School Services, which operates Warren County’s school buses.
Currently, there are 55 routes – 45 regular education and 10 special education. Right now, Radar says she has 54 full-time/ part-time bus drivers, 11 monitors and two full-time, ASE-certified mechanics.
Asked School Board member Bill Zechman, “You say you are adequately staffed now. What about in the near future as far as drivers and getting them recruited?”
“We have three in training and actively recruiting,” said Radar. “In the afternoon we are having to double some just for the fact to cover sporting events and sickness that happens. However, that is one thing that I like to stress about my people. If a bus breaks down, every driver I have is willing to step in to finish the route.”
Radar said her goal is to be fully staffed with every route covered with at least five substitutes or standby drivers.
In additional updates, six buses have been replaced. DriveCams have been installed on every single bus in the fleet.
“It helps with coaching,” said Radar. “It picks up everything. If they take a drink of water while driving down the road, we get a report so it is a good thing.”
As for other preparation for her drivers, Radar said special training on suicide prevention was given by Candice Willmore. Additionally, the state requires a four-hour, in-service training with the Tennessee Highway Patrol, which took place in September. An emergency evacuation drill will be performed this week.
The update was given to members of the School Board last Thursday.