Milford schools

No bus problems planned for the first day


MILFORD – The shortage of bus drivers and missed routes should not be a concern for parents in Milford when the town’s schools open on Wednesday, according to a senior school official.

Milford Schools’ operations director James Richetelli, Jr., said there were no issues with a driver shortage or fear of missed routes with Durham School Services, the system’s contracted bus company school.

“We are very lucky,” said Richetelli. “(Durham) did a great job of retaining drivers… they’ve been working there since the start of the pandemic. They also did a big recruiting drive before last year, and they have several new drivers trained, licensed and ready to go.

Bus companies statewide are running out of drivers, resulting in consolidated or missed routes. Schools in Hamden had more than 300 students on opening day Monday who needed alternative transportation to get to schools because the company they were outsourcing did not have enough drivers.

Richetelli said Durham operates 63 buses in the city, with some 110 routes and 1,100 stops. Durham has 70 pilots and 10 reserve pilots, he added.

“They have been excellent,” Richetelli said of the Durham drivers, who he says are treated as an extension of the school system’s staff.

Milford has contracted with Durham School Services for the past 15 years.

“COVID is affecting so much, but this year it is not affecting the bus routes or the transportation system that we have,” Richetelli said. “We continue to follow COVID protocols. Parents need to know that the transportation system is working as it should.

“The students will be safe… they will arrive at school on time and be brought home safely and on time,” he added.

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