As we approach the first day of school for students across the state of Iowa, I think it'd be safe to say it hasn't been exactly a great summer for Iowa school districts. Last week we heard a former Iowa school teacher explain the real reasons teachers were leaving schools as Iowa see's a massive teaching shortage throughout the state. To be fair this isn't just an Iowa problem but the list continues on shortages for Iowa school districts.

Iowa is in need of bus drivers. Districts across the entire state are looking to fill this position as KCRG reports, there are 200 openings for drivers in Iowa. What makes this a hard position to fill is this isn't a position anyone can just apply for. There are certain criteria applicants need to meet in order to get the job.

According to Iowa Gov "Any driver who wishes to drive a school bus having a design capacity to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver, must have both a school bus endorsement as well as a passenger endorsement on their CDL."

Since the pandemic, it's been hard enough for businesses to fill jobs that require no previous training. Now imagine trying to fill a job that has previous requirements and training that needs to be completed before you can even apply. That alone will limit applicants. Then you can add on people who aren't a big fan of kids and the pressures that come with dealing with young kids and teenagers...the options to choose from could end up pretty slim.

KCRG talked to Autumn Pino, who is the shared superintendent of Springville and Lisbon districts and she said they've been trying to actively advertise and people have stepped up.

We’ve tried to be active in our advertisement. People are stepping up and calling now to say what need do you have? And at least will come in and explore the opportunity and find out what training is involved.

She also mentioned possibly hiring people to drive smaller vans while those drivers get the training they need to operate a school bus.

So what we’re trying to do is hire those drivers on and say we can give you some work as far as driving the van and kind of that more smaller shorter training, and then were phasing them into the yellow school bus transportation.

KCRG reports Springville is in need of 9 more bus drivers as they are just days away from the start of school. Larger school districts such as Cedar Rapids Community School also is having trouble filling this job. They recently attended a job fair looking for people to drive their school buses.

Last week we learned about a teaching shortage, sadly, Iowa now is just trying to figure out creative ways to get kids to school on time.

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Anyone else share a sense of humor with a state's Department of Transportation? Just me? Well, every Monday the Iowa Department of Transportation puts up a sometimes hilarious, sometimes straightforward message on their road signs across the state. This is called "message Monday" and Iowa DOT tries to entertain and educate drivers through these signs. Here are just a few of our favorites.


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