With the school year creeping closer, the need for more bus drivers is growing and at least one local school bus company is on the lookout for recruits.

Although they recruit throughout the year, this time of year is especially busy, said Southland Transportation’s general manager Jay Maki.

“We’re still recruiting, we really never stop,” said Maki. “We still have three weeks, so our target was 125 people and we’re hopeful that we will meet that target.”

Assistant general manager June Read added about 40 people through the two-week program already this summer, but they still need approximately 25 to 35 more drivers.

“The training sort of ramps up again in August,” she said.

Read said one of the benefits of becoming a bus driver is the connection that many drivers develop with students.

“Over the years, students have actually said that one of the most important people that they had on a daily basis who got to know them and cared about them was their school bus driver,” she said.

One requirement for the job: patience in traffic, Read said with a laugh.

In total, Southland Transportation has 550 routes in Calgary.