Appreciated school bus drivers celebrated

Post date: Oct 31, 2019 11:12:6 AM

Drivers who transport the K-12 students of the Wells-Ogunquit CSD were recognized for their work and dedication during School Bus Driver Appreciation Week, October 21-25. There are currently 19 drivers who work out of the Ledgemere bus barn in Wells. On an average school day, they collectively transport approximately 800 of the District’s students over hundreds of miles.

This year, drivers received gift bags that included personalized cards of appreciation from elementary students and Dunkin’ Donuts gift cards. They were also served a Monday breakfast and a Friday lunch with food donated by parents of students and Hannaford in Wells. Beginning Monday they were greeted with “thank you” signs along their routes. This annual event is sponsored by the PTSA at Wells Elementary School with Nicole Iannillo and Kelli Madsen heading the parent organization’s Bus Driver Appreciation Week committee.

"It feels nice to be acknowledged,” commented longtime bus driver Paul Littlefield. “Getting students on and off the bus can be tricky sometimes - especially on busy roads. Safety is always the top priority. The cards and treats from the kids and PTSA are great!"

Lauren Clark is the manager of the Ledgemere bus barn in Wells. She thought this year’s week of appreciation went “very well”. She added, “We especially loved the cards that we get from the students.” Clark said that anyone interested in a part-time job driving a school bus should contact her at 207-646-5502.

According to Clark, one dangerous situation for her drivers to encounter continues to be the occasional vehicles that attempt to or actually pass a school bus that is picking up or dropping off passengers. She said that she currently receives reports from her drivers (up to 12 total per day) of vehicles illegally passing the busses she manages. She stressed that it is critical for drivers not to pass a school bus when they see it stopped and showing warning indicators, including flashing lights and a raised stop sign.

Ledgemere Transportation Inc. is a subsidiary of Student Transportation of America.

Caption: At the Ledgemere bus barn location in Wells are some of Ledgemere’s bus drivers who transport Wells-Ogunquit CSD students. From left to right are Tammy Bissell, Paul Littlefield, Cassie Durham, Connie Hilton, Bill Grant, Jean LaRiviere, Maurice Viollette, Gene Sledzieski, Christine Towne, Rochelle Greenwood, Tabitha Bergeron and Lauren Clark.