By Amy Kawata

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — From teachers to food service workers to custodians, Anne Arundel County Public School leaders say the district is struggling to fill open roles.

“We are hiring. It has been difficult. Our colleagues, both around the state and around the country, are suffering the same,” said George Arlotto, AACPS Superintendent of Schools.

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In particular, those who take students to and from school, bus drivers.

“On any given single day, we’ve got drivers that are in COVID quarantine or drivers on sick leave or other things. It’s sort of a very dynamic situation,” said Alex Szachnowicz, Chief Operating Officer, AACPS.

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Right now, Anne Arundel County Public School’s Chief Operating Officer says the district is short about 60 bus drivers but, they’re doing everything they can to stay afloat and address the shortage. They have been consolidating routes, partnering up with the City of Annapolis to use its public transportation buses for students along with recruitment and retention efforts.

“Dr. Lindsey and a college is partnering with AAWDC to offer CDL classes to get more drivers into the pipeline of course some of which will come to the schools,” said Szachnowicz.

The Anne Arundel County Board of Education recently approved a $7.4 million budget for school bus drivers and attendants which has been forwarded to the county executive.

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They are set to vote on it in November.