QUINCY -- The shortage of bus drivers for Quincy Public Schools is as bad as Shane Barnes has ever seen in his 15 years with the district.
The district's director of transportation said the district is ready to hire 15 drivers to fill three open routes, two upcoming retirements and replenish substitute drivers.
"With the field trip coming into effect, we definitely need them all," Barnes said.
The district is recruiting bus drivers to try and have about 90 drivers for the 80 routes and 10 substitutes.
Barnes said bus drivers are a mixture of people who drive for their living and retirees looking for a gig that provides about 20 hours a week.
Additional opportunities are available for drivers who will drive for field trips, activities or athletics.
Bus drivers must be 21 with a valid driver's license. A commercial driver's license is not required to apply, but the district provides training to help drivers earn a commercial driver's license with the necessary endorsements.
Pay starts at $12.87 per hour, and benefits are available for those who are assigned a route.
"That's a big thing when we're recruiting," Barnes said. "That's what a lot of retirees do. They do this just to cover their health benefits, and they have the summers off. It's probably the biggest sales pitch."
Those interested in applying can visit qps.org. More information is available by calling the Transportation Department at 217-224-5910.