Pasco school driver picking up kids to go to school. Photo: Pasco School District 1
PASCO, WA. – School bus drivers from the Pasco School District, in Benton County, Washington, are claiming long-time unpaid wages and requesting salaries increases before kids from K to 12 get back to school in just a few weeks ahead. Drivers said they have no trust in the district anymore and feel forgotten by the school institution.
“We’re wanting the district to be fair to us, to give us our raises, to give us money that is owed to us – hours we’ve worked that we’ve been asked for and haven’t been given yet,” said Cecilia, a district’s school bus driver.
However, in an email sent to El Portal de Ramón – an international news blog in Spanish, the Pasco School District Public Affairs Director, Shane Edinger, wrote:
“I wanted to let you know that Pasco School District reached a tentative agreement on a new labor contract with our bus drivers on Monday. The union will be contacting their members to hold a ratification meeting on the new agreement later this month.”
Although it is not specified how the new agreement will be, the disappointed drivers said that it is very important for the district to listen to their claims, so they can continue driving students from home to school.
Up to this point, the district does not know yet how many students will need school transportation – because for the 21-22 school year, parents would have the option to choose whether they want to send their kids in-person or hybrid classes – or totally remote.
Caroline, a mother who did not want to show her face and preferred only audio, is concern about the school driver’s dispute against the district, and she hopes an agreement can be reached before the begging of the school year, so children don’t have to miss classes.
“I pray that they have what they want, and quickly so that everyone can get on with their lives.”
Watch Pasco school bus drivers protesting for better wages
Last updated on August 13, 2021 by Ramón Warini