Shuttle bus.jpeg

Driver Butch Cowart helps Landon Seright, 11, Justin Davis, 12, and Benjamin Rodriguez, 10, board the shuttle bus at the Youth Center. 

The School Bus Program at Redstone Arsenal is looking for a few good drivers.

Sheryl Scott-Astle, contact for the program, said staff is down by about half and they are actively recruiting five to eight additional drivers.

“Before COVID hit, we had a total of 15 regular drivers on staff. We went to 43 schools. We transported 196 children a day,” Scott-Astle said.

The pandemic shut down schools and some after-school programs on post, which meant the part-time drivers were out of a job. Some retired and others found employment elsewhere.

But with the ring of the school bell just a few weeks away, “we are desperately looking for drivers,” Scott-Astle said. “We’re on a full court press to get drivers.”

The vehicles that transport children from Huntsville, Madison and Madison County schools are actually 14-passenger vans and not buses.

Drivers work between the hours of 12:30 p.m., when they report to work and do a maintenance check on their vehicles, to 3 to 4:15 p.m. five days a week, which translates to 15 to 22 hours per week, “depending on the route and the number of schools (they travel to),” she said.

Most of the actual routes from school to the installation take 30 to 45 minutes. Children are picked up and delivered to the Arsenal to their respective after-school programs, Scott-Astle said.

Requirements for drivers include experience driving a van that seats at least 14 passengers, and the passing of a background check. A Commercial Driver License is not required, Scott-Astle said.

Training is provided and varies, depending on the amount of experience of each driver. During the first week, training includes an overview of the vans and their security features, familiarity with driving routes, and first aid training.

While it will never be a full-time job, the program does provide drivers with extra money and other perks.

“We are a cool place to work,” Scott-Astle said. “All of our people love children.”

People from “all walks of life” can apply for the job, from those in their

20s to retirees.

To apply for the job, use the QR code on a Child and Youth Services flyer (which can be found on the Redstone MWR page) or visit usajobs.gov for the job titled “motor vehicle operator.”

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