After his children missed school due to the state-wide bus driver shortage, a Columbus, Ohio, father decided to take matters into his own hands. Sean Roger Jr. revved up the engine of the family’s limousine and decided to take the students to school in style, according to ABC 6.
After his kids missed a day of school when their bus didn’t show up, a Columbus dad decided to use his family’s limousine to help get kids to school.
Now, he’s helping more than 40 students with a ride! Details: https://t.co/zWMu4Z2uyE
(Photos: Sean Rogers Jr.) pic.twitter.com/uJiwWl8qqW
— WSYX ABC 6 (@wsyx6) October 7, 2021
“Everybody is so shocked like who is this guy pulling up in a limo and then they wonder who is in the back seat,” Rogers told the outlet.
He logged onto Facebook, sharing his idea with his followers last Friday, and was surprised to be met with support from so many parents in his neighborhood.
“Everybody always wants to say let’s help the community let’s stop this violence that type of stuff but I feel like a big step of stopping the violence is getting kids to school instead of letting them skip school and go out and get into trouble,” he continued.
Within a short amount of time, Rogers was loading his limousine with children for school dropoffs. On Monday, he picked up 25 kids. By the following day, his count grew to 42 children.
“A little girl almost made me cry yesterday because she cried because she missed, I think they said she missed almost a week of school just due to transportation, and she cried because she was so happy to go to school,” Rogers said.
His neighbors are also thankful for the extra help. The bus driver shortage has taken its toll on parents as well as school districts who’ve been stretched to their limits trying to find ways to get their children to school.
“He’s a blessing, he is a blessing that’s helpful it helps a lot of kids out,” Quetta Jaye told ABC 6.
“The buses don’t come in the morning, they don’t come at night, they don’t have a driver for our kids to make it to school and back,” Jaye said.
Cleveland.com reports the bus driver shortage in the state is largely due to COVID-19 as many drivers are being forced to abandon their routes out of a need to isolate and quarantine. Ninety percent of Ohio’s school districts are currently experiencing a shortage and almost 4% of the routes have been canceled altogether. In response, multiple schools have called on the National Guard to assist.
In Massachusetts, Gov. Charlie Baker enlisted the help of the National Guard to assist with its dwindling number of bus drivers. As of Sept. 27, at least 90 National Guard members had been trained to drive school transport vans for four districts.
In Columbus, at least 15-20% of the school district’s bus drivers were calling out of work per day, Columbus City Schools Superintendent Dr. Talisa Dixon shared in a school board meeting on Tuesday.
“Our team is also advocating at the state level for measures that would enable us to provide improved transportation services. This includes the use of vans and additional certification opportunities for trainees,” Dixon said.