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Amid bus driver shortage, dad uses limo to get kids to Ohio school

Published: Oct. 7, 2021 at 5:38 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX) - An enterprising parent in central Ohio found a luxurious solution to the bus driver shortage.

But the local school board is not happy he’s using a limousine to take children to school.

Sean Rogers Jr. decided it was time to pull out all the stops after his kids missed school Friday when their bus didn’t show up.

“Everybody is so shocked, like, ‘Who is this guy pulling up in a limo’ or whatever? Then everyone wonders who was in the backseat?” Rogers said.

He borrowed a ride from his dad’s limousine service and hit the road.

“You know, everybody always wants to say, ‘Oh, let’s help the community. Let’s stop this violence,’ and all this type stuff,” Rogers said. “Well, I feel like a big step of stopping the violence is, part of it, getting kids to school instead of letting them skip school and go out here and get into trouble.”

On Monday, he took 25 kids to school. Tuesday, he had 42, many from the Linden neighborhood where he grew up.

“A little girl almost made me cry yesterday, because she cried because she missed, what I think they said she missed almost a week, if I’m not mistaken, they said a week of school just due to transportation,” Rogers said. And she cried because she was so happy to go to school.”

Parents in the area said they are stuck without an option. One of them, Quetta Jaye, called Rogers a blessing, saying he is helping a lot of kids.

“The buses don’t come in the morning,” Jaye said. “They don’t come at night, like they didn’t have no drivers for our kids to make it to school and back.”

The bus driver shortage is impacting kids across the area. At a board meeting Tuesday night, Columbus City Schools says 15 to 20% of the district’s drivers called off almost every day last week.

“Our team is also advocating at the state level for measures that will enable us to provide improved transportation services,” said Superintendent Talisa Dixon. “This includes the use of vans and additional certification opportunities for trainees.”

Parents are thankful the limo driver stepped up, but the school district is not. School officials pointed out that the limo is not approved for student transportation.

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