By establishing policies on which students can receive special-needs bus transportation and providing those students with the exact services they need, transportation departments can operate buses efficiently, creating cost savings for districts. Communication and teamwork between school and transportation personnel are essential to achieving this.Read more of what is inside this month's issue.
At Shelby County Schools, enhanced driver training and partnerships with school staff have led to drastic improvements in student behavior on the bus. Here, we spend a day with Director of Transportation Debbie Rike to see how she steers the operation toward success.
Expanding discipline policies to cover both transportation and campus life, providing crisis intervention training to staff and sharing relevant student information with the right personnel will help minimize student violence on the bus and in the classroom.
To ensure students’ safety, transportation managers must implement a procedure for this effort that includes scheduled onsite reviews and a means to efficiently communicate the hazards to staff. School bus drivers, local and state police, and local emergency operations centers should be involved.
While surveillance cameras and assigned seating can help in addressing student behavior problems on the school bus, officials say that getting to know passengers, handling discipline issues in a positive way and acknowledging proper bus etiquette are also effective ways to keep troublesome behavior at bay. Here, we share the specifics of several programs and initiatives based on these approaches.
Physical security such as fences and video surveillance, in addition to providing your drivers and other staff with ID badges and safety training, can go a long way in securing your bus yard.
On David Strickland’s watch, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has publicly supported the safety record of the yellow bus and has launched a campaign to promote ridership. In an exclusive interview with SBF, the administrator discusses these topics and reaffirms the agency’s decision to not mandate seat belts on large school buses.
From operating alternative-fueled vehicles to installing pollution-control equipment on buses to reducing idling, pupil transportation operations are doing their part to provide a healthy and safe ride to and from school for students. Here, we provide details on these and other environmentally friendly practices at school districts and contractors throughout the country.
Developing an emergency preparedness plan based on command, control and communication can help to reduce injuries and potentially save lives. Building relationships with first responders can ensure your operation’s viability in the emergency response cycle by bringing awareness of what it has to offer during crises.
Pupil transporters say that technicians should have a desire to learn, and they discuss methods and resources for instruction. They also say that employee communication, a strong preventive maintenance program and performance benchmarking are essential to achieving well-maintained school buses.
An industry veteran discusses the negative repercussions of high levels of stress and offers tips on how to stay on track to good physical and mental health. Doing so will help one stay focused on “the prize” — the next generation of students.
In the second edition of this series, we highlight school bus drivers who saved lives with their quick thinking and vital skills. When danger arose, their training — and their instincts — came through.