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School Bus Driver Recruitment

Find a meaningful job as a School Bus or Van driver with one of our many Operators in the Ottawa Area!

Driving a school bus is a fulfilling opportunity.  If you have an interest in working with children and youth, this may be the right job for you.  Approximately 1200 school buses and school purpose vehicles travel 75,000 kilometres in Ottawa every school day.  These trained professionals provide 15 million safe rides during the school year. 

Every day is an adventure.

– Local Bus Driver

Answer the call. Be a Driver.

School bus drivers enjoy regular part-time employment which can be a great fit for many families, retired persons and the self-employed. OSTA contracts over 10 local bus Operators who are responsible for the hiring and training process. Professional training is often provided by the school bus company at little cost to drivers. Training includes safe driving techniques, bus evacuation, student management, and other specialized training dependent on the applicants’ needs.

  • Meet the minimum age requirements to hold a school bus driver’s license in your province (and the company standard minimum of 21 years of age)
  • Hold a valid (non-probationary) driver’s license and a very good driving record
  • Undergo & pass a Ministry prescribed Medical examination, criminal record search, vulnerable sector clearance and other background checks
  • Complete a government-approved School Bus Driver Improvement Course
  • Pass a road test using a vehicle that meets the requirements
  • Have a sound knowledge of the region of the assigned school route and surrounding areas

Do you have what it takes to be a School Bus or Van driver? Find out Below!

Hear what current drivers love about their job!

"After my retirement, I started as a school bus driver. It gives me a great opportunity to work on my own without a supervisor overlooking my shoulders, I love driving children because they are easy to manage and quick to learn and follow the instructions on a safe journey on a school bus. My weekends are free to enjoy with my family and friends and I get decent extra pay for this part-time job to complete my projects. My training for license upgrade was free, instructors were knowledgeable and great to teach me safe driving practices, no doubt I will recommend my friends, stay-at-home mothers and other part-timers to look at this opportunity to serve the community." - Driver from First Student

"I enjoy driving the High School students because each day I learn something new from the students, and it can be a pleasure talking to them." - Driver from Allegiance Transportation Services

"Even though I'm retired from the Canadian Forces I like to keep discipline i.e., getting up early to take advantage of the day, being useful to the community, and earning extra money to supplement my pension... When I see kids getting off the bus and taking time to thank me or turn around to wave at me, I know I made a difference in their life that day but what they don't know is that they also make a difference in my life."  - Driver from Voyago

"It is important to serve the public. Especially for future generations." - Driver from Voyago

"Over time the children regard you as something like a teacher/relative/friend.  They make things for you and express their fondness and appreciation." - Driver from First Student

"As a mother of 6, it helps me stay focused to ensure the older 3 get up and off to school. I get to bring my babies/toddlers with me so once we come home from the route it's lunch and nap time so I am able to get housework done. Then once nap time is done, I pack them back on the bus and do the pm route. Come home to make supper, bath then bed. Makes my days a lot easier and less stressful." - Driver from First Student

"I enjoy both the driving aspect of a school bus along with the care for the students as well. This job suits my personality and also enjoy the interaction with the kids in helping them in being an important role in their everyday lives." – Driver from M.L. Bradley

Benefits of becoming a School Bus or Van Driver

Driving a school bus is a fulfilling employment opportunity. There are many benefits that may include:

  • Work with Children and Youth
  • Flexible hours
  • Free Training
  • Competitive Wages
  • Nights and Weekends Off
  • Summers Off
  • Take your kids to work (Van drivers excluded)
  • Park-outs available
  • Freedom of being out on the open road (No desk work!)
  • Ministry Bonus and other benefits
  • Making a real difference in the lives of the families and children in the Ottawa area
  • PPE is provided to all drivers to ensure proper respiratory and hygiene safety

Qualities of a School Bus or Van Driver

Driving a school bus takes a special kind of person. If you have the qualities listed below, then driving a School Bus or Van might be for you!

  • Portrait of a cute little girl getting down from the bus while driver looking at herLikes being around children
  • Caring
  • Personable
  • Dependable
  • Likes dealing with the public
  • Wants to give back to their community
  • Calm under pressure
  • Dedicated to their work
  • Respectful of others
  • Committed to SAFETY!
What type of people become bus drivers or van drivers?

School Bus Drivers in Ottawa come from diverse backgrounds and may include:

  • Shift workers, or, seasonal and part-time looking for supplemental income
  • First Responders
  • Taxi drivers and Uber drivers
  • Transit drivers
  • Retirees
  • Stay-at-home Moms and Dads
  • People with flexible home-based businesses
Qualifications needed to become a School Bus or Van Driver

Find out if you qualify to become a school bus or van driver:

  • group of teen scholars riding school bus and talking with happy mature driverMeet the minimum age requirements to hold a school bus driver’s license in your province (and the company standard minimum of 21 years of age)
  • Hold a valid (non-probationary) driver's license and a very good driving record
  • Have at least 3 years of driving experience (at least 1 in North America) *Check with your Operator
  • Undergo & pass a Ministry prescribed Medical examination, criminal record search, vulnerable sector clearance and other background checks
  • Complete a government-approved School Bus Driver Improvement Course
  • Pass a road test using a vehicle that meets the requirements
  • Have a sound knowledge of the region of the assigned school route and surrounding areas
Responsibilities of a School Bus and Van Driver

As a School Bus or Van Driver, you'll be responsible for:

  • Smiling schoolgirl going back to school with books and copybooks waiting for schoolbus. New academic year semesterSafely transporting students to/ from school and activities on time
  • Ensuring students’ safety while boarding and exiting buses and crossing streets
  • Providing First-Aid to students if needed
  • Providing behaviour management and/or completing incident reports as needed
  • Adhering to and enforcing bus safety rules and standards
  • Complying with traffic regulations to operate vehicles in a safe and courteous manner
  • Performing pre/post trip vehicle inspections to ensure optimal vehicle safety
  • Adhering to Operator policies and procedures and all government regulations at all times
  • Reporting any bus malfunctions or needed repairs
  • Completing all necessary paperwork as required, such as trip and mileage logs
  • Attending paid monthly in-service safety training
Process of becoming a Yellow School Bus or Van Driver

The process of becoming a Yellow School Bus Driver is not overnight. You will need to dedicate about four weeks of time to lessons, training, and testing.

handsome smiling school bus driver looking at cameraThe first step is to contact one of our many Operators in Ottawa and pass a pre-screening. Once accepted, the applicant can then:

  1. Participate in a formal interview with the Operator
  2. Provide initial documents (current license, a driver’s abstract etc.)
  3. Study the Bus Driver Manual
  4. Begin In-class training with a Ministry-approved trainer.
  5. Receive a Learner's License (Sign knowledge/Bus Driving Rules).
  6. Undergo & pass a Ministry prescribed Medical examination, criminal record search, vulnerable sector clearance and other background checks.
  7. Complete Road Training on a Bus with a trainer
  8. Complete the Final Road test for B License
  9. Receive their B License
  10. Receive a route assignment
  11. Perform test runs to ensure familiarity
  12. The driver is now ready to drive!

Please note that the steps above are only an overview. The Operator will outline the entire process to each applicant. All training is paid for by the Operator.


The process of becoming of School Purpose Van Driver is a more straightforward process as drivers only need a G License to drive School Purpose Vans.

The first step is to contact one of our many Operators in Ottawa and pass a pre-screening. Once accepted, the applicant can then:

  1. Participate in a formal interview with the Operator
  2. Complete a criminal background check for the vulnerability sector, TB testing, Driver's abstract, and Defensive driving
  3. Complete CPR / First Aid training
  4. Participate in workplace harassment training, safety meetings, and other training
  5. Receive a route assignment
  6. Perform test runs to ensure familiarity
  7. The driver is now ready to drive!

Please note that the steps above are only an overview. The Operator will outline the entire process to each applicant. All training is paid for by the Operator.

School bus licensing (Class B) Information

Yellow School bus licences

Class B and E

To drive a school bus in Ontario, you need either a B or an E Class licence. Operators will help guide you through the process of obtaining a B Class license to become a School Bus Driver.

Class B licence lets you:

  • Drive a school bus with seating for more than 24 passengers
  • Drive vehicles covered by C, D, E, F and G class licences

Class E licence lets you:

  • Drive a school bus with seating for up to 24 passengers
  • Drive vehicles covered by F and G class licences

Requirements

To get a B or E licence, you must:

  • Be at least 21 years old
  • Hold a valid Ontario licence other than G1, G2, M, M1 or M2
  • Pass a vision test
  • Submit a valid medical report
  • Complete a government-approved School Bus Driver Improvement Course
  • Pass a Criminal Record and Judicial Matters (CRJM) Check
  • Have fewer than 6 demerit points on your driving record
  • Pass a knowledge test about operating school buses and trucks (for Class B only)
  • Pass a road test using a vehicle that meets the requirements

You will not be able to get a Class B or E licence if your driver's licence has been suspended during the past 12 months for any offence outlined in the Official MTO Bus Handbook.

School Bus and Van Operators that are hiring
Operator Vehicle Type Email/Website Phone Area Covered
DC Bus Lines Van 613-831-9888 West of Rideau River
Direct Transportation Wheelchair bus and

Van

patricia@directtansportation.ca 613-749-0660 East, West and South
First Student Yellow Bus Robert.chamberland@firstgroup.com 437-777-6735 West, Centretown
M&R Transportation Van  studenttranspo@hotmail.com 613-749-3375 Nepean
ML Bradley Yellow Bus www.mlbradley.com/apply-now 613-835-2488 Central, East
Premier Bus Lines Yellow Bus www.premierbuslines.ca/ 613-253-8863 Central, Nepean
Roxborough Bus Lines Yellow Bus and Van roxboroughbus.com/careers 613-821-1414 Nepean, south, east
Sommer
Transportation Services
Van sts.inquiry@gmail.com 613-723-9677 East, Centre, South, West
Voyago Yellow and

Wheelchair Bus

Tricia.Charles@voyago.ca 613-266-2702 West

Are you ready to get behind the wheel of a new career as a School Bus Driver?

Local Operators are equal opportunity employers that welcome a diverse workforce!

To apply, you can contact one of the carriers directly or head over to our driveyellow.ca website to apply.