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How Do I Get a School Bus Driver Job?

School bus drivers may shuttle students during field trips.
A school bus driver is responsible for the transportation of children to and from school.
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  • Written By: K T Solis
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 03 July 2014
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School bus drivers are responsible for safely transporting students to and from school. They also shuttle students to field trips and other official school functions. In order to find a school bus driver job, a person needs to fill out an employment application with a school district that seeks bus drivers.

Being selected for a school bus driver job usually requires that an applicant holds a high school diploma or GED. Applicants must possess a commercial driver's license (CDL) with a passenger endorsement. They are required to provide work and personal references so that school districts can ensure they are hiring the best possible candidates. Those who wish to work as school bus drivers must also submit to a criminal background check. A drug test is administered to bus driver applicants as well.

Newly hired school bus drivers receive training to become skilled at driving a bus. They practice driving the bus, learning how to make turns, back up the bus, drive through narrow streets, and other typical maneuvers. Bus drivers learn state and local regulations in regards to bus driving and become familiar with the rules of the school districts in which they work.

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Working with children is not an easy job, but school bus drivers must do so on a daily basis. They must have the ability to maintain order on the school bus and deal with any behavior problems that may arise. Sometimes, they may need to help small children or children with disabilities as the students board or get off the bus.

A school bus driver often deals with stressful situations. For example, children can often be noisy and disruptive on a school bus. The bus driver must deal with behavior issues, heavy traffic, and the worries of arriving to destinations in a timely manner.

If a person wishes to find a school bus driver job, he or she should check with the local school district. Since the job is an entry-level position and can be stressful, there is high turnover. For this reason, it is usually easy to find districts that are seeking new bus drivers. Many school districts actively recruit drivers, offering sign-on bonuses and an hourly pay that is above minimum wage.

Anyone who finds a school bus driver job can expect to have summers off, since most schools do not have classes in the summer. Bus drivers can enjoy spring break and winter break vacations in addition to their summer breaks. Some people with school bus driver jobs obtain summer employment in order to earn extra money. Other bus drivers choose to enjoy their time off, using money they have saved during the school year to support themselves.

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