Our award-winning district is tackling the bus driver shortage
with pay increases, employee stipends, contract labor, and teamwork.
Like other school districts across the state and nation, Litchfield Elementary School District is experiencing a severe staffing shortage. School bus drivers are in particularly high demand.
In an effort to attract and retain quality student transporters, our award-winning district recently distributed retention stipends to eligible employees and increased the starting hourly rate for student transporters to $20.00. The rate increase is expected to gradually help to stabilize transportation services across the District, but bus drivers and bus monitors are still in high demand. (Bus monitors also recently received a $1 per hour pay increase.)
Director of Community Relations Shelly Hornback said, “The recent pay increase has helped attract more than a dozen applicants, some of whom are currently in the hiring and training process that can take well over a month.”
In response to this serious labor shortage, the District has condensed many routes and routinely asks drivers to take on extra shifts. Several routes are canceled indefinitely and will be reinstated when new drivers are hired and trained. The Director of Transportation and the department’s administrative assistant have been driving daily routes since the beginning of the school year.
Hornback said, “In addition to incentive stipends, pay increases, and heroic drivers who are working extraordinarily hard, we are also partnering with a third-party vendor to finalize a contract that is expected to give us access to several additional qualified drivers.”
In addition to student transporters, the District has high demand for several support positions, including extended day staff, food service workers, guest teachers, classroom aides, and groundskeepers.
Litchfield Elementary School District is hosting two job fairs to attract new employees.
- Saturday, January 22, 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Support Service Building, 18921 West Thomas Road, Building A, Litchfield Park
- Saturday, February 26, 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Palm Valley Elementary School, 2801 North 135th Avenue, Goodyear
Hornback said, “We are grateful to our families for their remarkable flexibility and support. Together, with our community, we are committed to doing everything we can to help our students thrive.”