Local schools face crossing guard shortage

By Ethan Nichols, World News Editor

Photo courtesy of commons.wikimedia.org

Cincinnati is facing a rising shortage of crossing guards and is increasing payment to compensate for the lack of guards.

The city and school district have 150 crossing guard spots but are down 44, leaving the city and district without one third of its crossing guards.

“No family or child should fear for their safety on their way to or from school. Paying a competitive wage will help ensure we will have crossing guards when students return to school in the fall. This is a great example of the city of Cincinnati and Cincinnati Public Schools (CPS) working together to address a real need for our schools,” Cincinnati City Councilmember Mark Jeffries said.

In response to the shortage, the city is raising the wages of crossing guards from $11 per hour to $15 per hour. 

“Our roadways are busier, and the need to strengthen and increase the city’s crossing guard presence is essential to reducing pedestrian-vehicle accidents,” Iranetta Wright, CPS Superintendent, said in a statement. “We cannot focus on student achievement in our schools without students and staff safely entering and leaving our schools. A crossing guard is a critical role in our Cincinnati neighborhoods, and increasing their pay structure is a good first step.”

The city and school district are hoping that, by offering more competitive wages, they can recruit more crossing guards before the start of the fall semester.