London

School bus operators reach deal with school boards, buses to run for first day of school

School bus operators and the organization that oversees transportation for the Thames Valley District and London District Catholic school board have reached a deal.

50,000 kids who take the bus to and from school will not have to worry about finding alternate arrangements

A dispute between school bus operators and the organization that oversees transportation services for the London region threatens to disrupt how 50,000 kids get to and from school. (Hala Ghonaim/CBC)

Parents can breath a sigh of relief — school bus operators and the organization that oversees transportation for the Thames Valley District and London District Catholic school boards have reached a deal to ensure service for the first day of school. 

That means 50,000 students who take school buses to and from school will not have to find alternative arrangements for Sept. 4.  

"The agreement provides for an interim increase to support driver wages and the remaining contract terms will be determined in due course," the Southwestern Ontario School Bus Operators Association wrote in a joint statement with the school boards and Southwestern Ontario Student Transportation Services. 

Bus drivers here have said they make much less than their counterparts in other southwestern Ontario communities. 

Details of the agreement have not yet been made public and won't, despite the fact that they involve public funds, said Tania Testa, spokesperson for the Thames Valley District school board. 

Other school boards in the province have released details of their agreements. 

All three parties have said they won't be speaking further about the agreement or whether further details need to be finalized. 

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