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Mindless-Employment t1_iu6ealy wrote

"Safety also responded and found 18 safety violations between the two school buses taking the children on the field trip. A third bus that responded to replace the damaged bus was also found to have safety violations. The unit determined none of the bus drivers were properly licensed to be driving the school buses."

This guy is just a symptom of a huge problem all over the country. Being a school bus driver doesn't pay well and the schedule - get up really early, work for a few hours, work again for a few hours in the afternoon five days a week - has to make it really difficult to have another job to make up the income shortfall.

It's not easy to find people who can pass the drug screen and backgeound check and who are willing to put up with the pay, the schedule, the stress and dealing with dozens of wild kids every day. Also, if DCPS is like many/most other school systems, the bus drivers are not school system employees. They're probably employed by some contractor or staffing service that pays badly and provides bare minimum benefits, which the drivers likely don't qualify for anyway since the weekly hours don't add up to full time.

Schools systems of every size all over the country have this problem. My brother was a substitute teacher last year in another state and school administrators tried more than once to persuade him to drive a school bus because they had such a shortage. He does not have any credentials to drive a school bus.


Not_A_Hemsworth t1_iu6rz2v wrote

I doubt the contractors are responsible for maintaining the busses though. That has to be on the school system which means all the vehicle safety violations are on the school system.


Professional-Can1385 t1_iu6to33 wrote

Do you know for sure DC owns the buses? In my school system, the school did not own the buses, the vendors did. The guy that owned the bus I rode owned 2 buses that serviced my school. My bus was just average, but some of my friends had nicer buses b/c different people owned them.


DrunkWoodchuck t1_iu7j6wj wrote

Don’t think dc owns the busses used for field trips. DC only provides transportation via school bus for students with IEPs, so keeping a fleet of full-size field trip busses ready would be needlessly expensive.


FairfaxGirl OP t1_iu6b16k wrote

“Reynolds was charged with driving while intoxicated (second offense within 5 to 10 years) with a child, commercial DWI with child endangerment, and nine counts of gross, wanton, or reckless care for a child. Police found Reynolds’ license was revoked in Virginia from a previous DWI and suspended in Maryland”

This seems absolutely unbelievable. DC Schools hires bus drivers who have revoked and suspended driver’s licenses and a previous DUI? If I had a kid in DCPS I would be losing my shit.


rlezar t1_iu6fyu3 wrote

> "DCPS takes this incident very seriously, and our teams will do a thorough review of our transportation vendors to ensure that student safety is always prioritized."

More like DCPS contracts with companies that are shady as shit, probably because they're the low bidders. [And/or have the right connection$, ofc.]

I don't think it's necessary to have a child in DCPS to find this situation absolutely outrageous. There's no excuse for this kind of blatant disregard for the safety of the kids and everyone else on the road.


Not_A_Hemsworth t1_iu6rsub wrote

This still doesn’t explain how both buses had numerous safety violations AND the one sent to get them also had safety violations. It’s a shit show for the school system for sure.


Tahh t1_iu6z20i wrote

For real, they just fired a receptionist for having a DUI on their record at the high school my mom works at (different state).


Mild_Chumbo t1_iu8y2gs wrote

I worked in a self-contained classroom where the majority of my students were bused in and out daily by OSSE for 4 years. Unfortunately, based on my experience with the drivers, attendants, and the OSSE dispatch staff, this does not come as a shock.

On top of the staff being severely undertrained and under supported, there was always a shortage. Multiple times a week we would have routes 1-2 hours late to school because there were not enough drivers and attendants to complete the routes. Since these students all had IEP's, it impacted the amount of service hours they were able to recieve and OSSE couldn't have shown they cared less.

Not to mention the multiple instances of the attendants verbally abusing students, threatening families with violence if they kept complaining to OSSE, and smoking on the bus (around students with asthma). It got so bad last year, one family got permission to FaceTime their child every ride to make sure their daughter was safe on the rides home.

My students came from the most vulnerable communities and families. They rely on the transportation and when it is so spotty, many parents have to call out of work to wait with their children. The response from OSSE was almost always a big shrugg and a "what's there to do" attitude.


squuidlees t1_iu6e1bv wrote

I remember I was on a school bus when I was 11 and thought the driver was gonna drive us off the edge of the mountain we were on to get back home from a sports event. I kept seeing the metal barrier getting closer, closer, further, closer. It’s scary to be on a school bus where the driver doesn’t have control!


papyrophilia t1_iu6zerf wrote

That s curve on Braddock is tricky even when sober.


Standard_Garage_7028 t1_iua5cw8 wrote

This driver was not a DCPS employee. This driver was an employee of the charter company that DCPS contracts out to.