CHICAGO (CBS) -- As the Chicago Public Schools and other districts grapple with the idea of bringing kids back into the classroom, busing companies say they're ready to roll.
In fact, one local company is hiring dozens of drivers.
CBS 2's Tim McNicholas is Working for Chicago, with opportunities and options to help you drive through this recession.
More than $10 million worth of buses are stopped at a bus barn at 26th Street and Western Avenue.
"I miss my kids," said Diane Dumas. "I like my kids. I know they miss being in school."
Dumas and Illinois Central School Bus drivers hope to put more of the buses into use in the months ahead. The company works with the Chicago Public Schools and other districts.
"I need these hours in order to pay my bills. to make it day by day," Dumas said.
Dumas already picked up one route this week -- her first in months. The company is confident there will be more demand soon.
Contract manager Cynthia Sosnowski said they are looking for 40 to 50 new drivers.
"I want to see people happy and making money," Sosnowski said. "I mean, the holidays are coming. Let's bring some joy to this crazy unprecedented time."
You don't need experience driving a bus. The company said if you're interested, they will train you and cover the fees for the special license you'll need.
You can kick the tires full or part time. Pay ranges from $14 to $21 per hour.
"If you're available only one day a week, come on in and we'll get you to work that day," Sosnowski said. "We're here to help people."
As for safety measures, the company said it checks every driver's temperature to start the day, and masks are required. They also have someone clean every bus after it is used.
"We're gonna get through this," Dumas said.
Dumas keeps extra masks in her bus in case a student forgets theirs.
"We got to get kids to and from school safely," Sosnowksi said.
The company plans to have the team assembled by mid-November. Sosnowski said drivers will either be helping a limited number of CPS students reteurn, or transporting other districts' students.
The company is owned by North America Central School Bus.
Some of the jobs will be based out of Blue Island, others out of that facility at 26th and Western.
CBS 2 is committing to Working For Chicago, connecting you every day with the information you or a loved one might need about the jobs market, and helping you remove roadblocks to getting back to work.
We'll keep uncovering information every day to help this community get back to work, until the job crisis passes. CBS 2 has several helpful items right here on our website, including a look at specific companies that are hiring, and information from the state about the best way to get through to file for unemployment benefits in the meantime.
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