Horry County School Board discusses bus driver wages, free lunches

Horry County School Board discusses bus driver wages, free lunches (WPDE file image)

Eleven schools in the Horry County School district fall under a new lunch plan which provides free lunch to all students.

The program is called Community Eligibility Provision (CEP).

It allows those schools to give free meals to all students, regardless of their family's income.

Chairman of the Horry County school board, Joe Defeo, says it will actually save the board and parents some money.

"A parent could easily see, per student, a $50-$150 because their children will be fed the same food that everybody else is. Now, you can buy more, you can buy less, you can bring your own lunch, you still have all of those options," said Defeo.

The purpose of CEP is to provide healthy meals to students and eliminate the free/reduced meal application process for parents.

Also at Monday night's meeting, Horry County Schools announced they are increasing the total number of hours new bus drivers will work per day.

Officials say most of their routes already take longer than 6 hours to complete and the state requires drivers to spend a total of an hour each day getting ready for and finishing up their route. They say that adds up to at least 7 and a half hours a day.

Officials also say there are currently 91 driver positions that require drivers to be on the job for at least eight hours a day.

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