PARSONS, W.Va. — Many north central West Virginia county board of educations are seeing a shortage of substitute workers across multiple categories.
According to officials with Tucker County Schools, the board of education has all of its full-time positions filled, but whenever a full-time person needs to be off, a shortage of substitute workers, including bus drivers, custodial staff, teachers and cooks, causes issues.
For this reason, there have been multiple times where staffing has had to move around in order to accommodate illnesses, vacations or other employees’ requests for time off, board of education officials said.
In the event of a bus driver absence which cannot be replaced, school officials have had to cancel runs, which result in excused absences for students — however, the board does recommend parents bring their children to school if they are able to, according to the board of education.
In some instances, substitute bus drivers are not available for morning runs, due to their other jobs, but can fill in for afternoon runs, officials said.
There have been times where Tucker County sports teams have had to forfeit games, because there hasn’t been a driver available to take them to the contests, according to Tucker County officials.
It’s not just a West Virginia problem. It’s something that school districts all over the country have been dealing with.