From ensuring students get to and from school safely, battling road conditions, and providing an uplifting ride, bus drivers are essential to making a meaningful student experience. Bus Driver Appreciation Day is Feb. 23, and Osseo Area Schools appreciates First Student, Northstar, and all bus drivers for their continued work to ensure students receive a safe and welcoming journey.
“School bus drivers and bus attendants are always the first and last members of our team to see our students each day. They build relationships with our students, and provide them with guidance,” said Troy Schriefels, director of facilities, transportation and risk management.
(Michael Dhani Bennett from Northstar)
For Northstar bus driver Michael Dhani Bennett, the relationships are one of the motivating factors that bring him back each day. Dhani Bennett initially applied for a van driving position with American Student Transportation, but was offered additional training to learn how to drive a bus. He was surprised by the opportunities to grow and the family-based company. Now he is coming up on a full year of employment, and he plans to continue in the future.
“We have hard times, but we get through them,” Dhani Bennett said.
Osseo Area Schools has more than 3,600 bus stops servicing 35 sites, and though there have been challenges with national and statewide bus driver shortage, bus drivers remain committed in their efforts to care for students.
“Bus drivers get up early every morning no matter the weather, road conditions, or challenges they face and they arrive to work ready to serve our students and communities with a smile. Please take a moment and thank them for their efforts, without them, our students’ educational experience would be different,” Schriefel continued.