The main focus of any school is to provide an education in a safe environment for its students. The teachers are the direct providers, but a complete support system is necessary to make teaching possible. That would include principals and other administrators, social workers, classroom aides, custodians and maintenance specialists. But the whole process would be futile if the students had no way of getting to school. So bus drivers and dispatchers are a very important part of any educational support system.

Jim Ellis retired in 2017. Over the course of a career of more than 40 years, he served as a driver or transportation supervisor for five area school districts: Syracuse, Seneca Falls, Moravia, Ithaca and Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES. Since then, he has spent time relaxing, traveling and visiting friends and family in other parts of the country with his wife, Annie. But he also found time to take the initiative to pursue one of his literary passions: poetry.

“I’ve loved poetry since I was a kid,” he told me. “It’s easy to follow. You can read a poem from anywhere in the world and find out our lives are not that different from those in other cultures. And we are in the greatest era of poetry ever.”

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