As school districts across North America move into a post-Covid world, many are starting to face another crisis brewing within their own transportation departments: driver shortages. While driver shortages are a familiar challenge to the transportation and logistics industry, the onset of the pandemic in March 2020 has exacerbated it.
One of the hardest-hit areas in this industry has been school districts. Prior to the pandemic, between 28-47% of districts surveyed faced driver shortage issues depending upon the size of the fleet. Other surveys indicate as many as 78% of districts struggle with staffing issues.
To say that school bus drivers were hit hard by Covid-19 pandemic is an understatement. School closures, capacity restrictions, and shifts to a remote-learning system led to large-scale furloughs of drivers that persisted for months, if not longer. And even those that stayed employed faced tough decisions. The average age of a school bus driver is 56 years old, which puts them into a higher risk category for developing serious complications from the coronavirus. Many started working for private companies, switched careers, or even dropped out of the workforce altogether.
As restrictions begin to relax and transportation leaders look to the 2021-2022 school year, the current landscape looks to be filled with challenges for districts across North America.
So where does pupil transportation go from here?
Looking for Solutions?
When it comes to dealing with driver shortages, Edulog Advisory Services is able to help your district.
What can we do?
- Conduct an Efficiency Assessment of your district’s transportation to determine where the major constraints and challenges to transportation are.
- Perform a Transportation Study that optimizes your current stops into runs and routes that simulate the most efficient way to operate your current bus fleet.
- Identify opportunities for improvement that reduce your total fleet size, from minor changes to radical and creative ideas.
- Support a business case for necessary investment, whether in vehicles, technology, or other major items.
Regardless of whether a district transports 500 students or 15,000 students, Edulog Advisory Services is here to help your district face the tough challenges that come with driver shortages. The reports and results that our team produces can allow your district to be timely and effective in its decision-making process. And even if your bus fleet is operating at the most efficient level possible, you can stand behind your choices with greater confidence when facing an uncertain future.
For more information, visit the Edulog Advisory Services page.
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