A statewide audit has found a number of school districts across Pennsylvania have employed bus drivers that should be banned from the job–and still more have drivers that aren’t properly cleared.
Auditor General Eugene DePasquale said the problem may be a communication breakdown between school districts and the bus companies they contract with.
His office’s report found ten bus drivers whose criminal convictions should have barred them from their jobs. One had a felony assault charge.
Even more common, though, is school districts failing to fully clear drivers, or to document clearances.
Each driver is supposed to have six documents on record. Of about 1,323 drivers reviewed statewide, 742–more than half–didn’t have all the right papers on file.
DePasquale said the issue is confined to districts that use contractor bus services–and he thinks he knows why.
“I think there are some instances when they contract [bussing] out, that they may believe the contractor is doing [background checks],” he said. “That is their mistake.”
“This should be a message to all school districts,” he added. “It is your responsibility, not the responsibility of the contractor, to make sure the people driving these buses are legally allowed to do it.”
We must also question why it is okay to have bus drivers with mental health issues-take Terri Ayers of Evans City. Ayers has clear mental health issues and has been threatening to kill woman and kids online within the last few weeks. Is this someone you would want driving your kids to school in a safe environment.