Las Cruces Public Schools Superintendent Greg Ewing on Monday hosted an appreciation breakfast at Oñate High School for the district’s bus drivers. The breakfast, held in the school’s commons area, featured breakfast burritos, pastries, fresh fruit, coffee and orange juice. The Oñate Symphony Orchestra provided entertainment for the event.

Bus drivers arrive at Oñate High School for an appreciation breakfast on Monday, Sept. 24, 2018.
Bus drivers arrive at Oñate High School for an appreciation breakfast on Monday, Sept. 24, 2018.

Ewing shared the story of his aunt Carol, who drove a school bus for more than 20 years, and some of the advice she imparted as he was starting out as a young schoolteacher. He thanked the drivers for the impact they have on the students of the district, as the first person students see in the morning, and the last person they see in the afternoon.

“I know that you have a difficult job to do,” Ewing told the drivers. “If you leave here with nothing else today, please know that we appreciate you. And thank you for what you do, each and every day.”

LCPS Superintendent Greg Ewing and members of his executive cabinet address the district’s school bus drivers at an appreciation breakfast at Oñate High School on Monday, Sept. 24, 2018.
LCPS Superintendent Greg Ewing and members of his executive cabinet address the district’s school bus drivers at an appreciation breakfast at Oñate High School on Monday, Sept. 24, 2018.

While transportation services for the district are provided through a contract with STS of New Mexico, Ewing made it clear to the bus drivers that his staff and cabinet are committed to supporting them as they serve the district’s students.

Ewing also promised the drivers that he and his executive cabinet would each spend a day riding various routes with the drivers, in order to better understand the challenges bus drivers face.

Bus drivers for STS of New Mexico listen to LCPS Superintendent Greg Ewing at a bus driver appreciation breakfast on Monday, Sept. 24, 2018.
Bus drivers for STS of New Mexico listen to LCPS Superintendent Greg Ewing at a bus driver appreciation breakfast on Monday, Sept. 24, 2018.

LCPS School Board President Ed Frank and Board Member Maria Flores also addressed the drivers, thanking them for their service to the district. Ewing and the school board members stressed that they will continue to work toward securing legislative funding for air-conditioned buses. Flores also urged the drivers to share their stories with elected officials.

— Damien Willis, LCPS Director of Communications, 575-527-5811, dwillis@lcps.net