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DPS Bus Drivers Could Strike This Month

The Ohio Supreme Court is considering the role of the school bus driver for student safety.
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Bus drivers for Dayton Public Schools could go on strike later this month. Members of the drivers’ union rejected the district’s latest contract offer Thursday night and agreed to file a 10-day strike notice.

The Dayton Daily News reports the 160 school bus drivers transport more than 11,000 students daily. That includes DPS students as well as kids from parochial, charter and private schools.

The April 21 strike would happen in the middle of state testing for thousands of students, including third-graders who must pass the state reading test to advance to the fourth grade.

Union members say DPS’s offer of $13.05 per hour for beginning drivers is too low and the proposed 2 percent raise wouldn’t be enough to cover the costs for increases in benefits.

Drivers in Trotwood and West Carrollton make more than $15 an hour and Huber Heights starts its drivers at $17 per hour.

The bus drivers’ contract actually expired in April 2014, and the sides have been in negotiations since June, with a federal mediator getting involved this year.