At Tuesday night's,school board meeting downtown, about a dozen employees of First Student, the transportation company that buses children throughout the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District, aired their concerns on subjects surrounding safety, among others.
First Student bus drivers, mechanics, attendants and monitors individually described a variety of safety concerns they say they've experienced, ranging from below–freezing interior bus temperatures, overworked mechanics, and mechanical issues.
School board members have asked Superintendent Pete Lewis to investigate the allegations.
Lewis says he first learned of First Student employee complaints last week and has been following up on them since that time.
As we reported, last Thursday, members of Teamsters Local 959, which represents drivers, mechanics, monitors and attendants for the school district, voted overwhelmingly to go on strike against First Student, but will continue to work as union and First Student officials continue to negotiate a contract settlement.
The school district has a contract with First Student, a Cincinnati–based company, to provide busing until August, 2016.