Chicago Public Schools considers rideshare alternatives to navigate bus driver shortage

llinois Answers explains the process of implementing rideshare service for students

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Saturday, January 20, 2024
CPS considers rideshare alternatives to address bus driver shortage
Chicago Public School officials are in early talks with ride share company HopSkipDrive as a busing alternative.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Chicago Public Schools is struggling to navigate a severe shortage of bus drivers.

The district started the 2023-24 school year short of roughly 600 bus drivers, or about half needed to transport all students. The district has not been able to provide about 5,500 general, magnet and selective enrollment students with transportation this academic year.

The shortage is forcing districts to get creative in finding transportation solutions. CPS officials are now in early conversations with HopSkipDrive, a transportation network company designed to take students ages six and older to and from school, extracurricular activities, and internships. CPS has also reached out to PiggyBack, a local solution started by a CPS parent that connects parents by matching routes to school or other activities, for information on a potential partnership.

The main challenge in bringing HopSkipDrive to Chicago starts with the state. Illinois Answers education reporter Jewel Jackson visited ABC 7 Chicago to explain the process of implementing the rideshare service in the windy city. You can read her full report at