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Articles/News with efficiency tag

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New York transportation director Al Karam switches districts
July 8, 2014
After 14 years at Bethlehem Central School District, Al Karam has moved to a different — and bigger — district. In his new position as director of transportation for Shenendehowa Central Schools, he will oversee a significantly larger fleet and about twice as many employees.
Apprentice, Intern Programs Groom Great Workers
July 1, 2014

In addition to giving students work skills and experience, districts get employees who are already familiar with the shop and its practices.

District aims to cut costs in busing with hub transfers
June 26, 2014
Starting next year at Quakertown (Pa.) Community School District, private and charter school students will be transported to hub locations and will then transfer to another bus for the rest of the trip. The district superintendent calls the move "an important cost-saving measure."
Zonar webinar to cover school bus fleet telematics
June 20, 2014
The free web seminar on June 26 will explain modern telematics platforms and how pupil transportation operations are using them to improve safety and efficiency.
ProSight Insurance, SmartDrive debut risk reduction solution for school buses
June 18, 2014
SecureFleet, developed exclusively for ProSight niche transportation customers, combines vehicle data and a video event recording system with a comprehensive driver coaching program to help fleet owners and safety managers reduce risks, cut costs and better manage fleets.
Zonar launches new telematics bundle packages
June 12, 2014
All packages include a comprehensive set of features with hardware, installation, activation, 24/7/365 support, access to the Zonar Knowledgebase and lifetime hardware warranties, company officials say. Prices start at less than $20 per month.
Blue Bird rallies in Fort Valley, ramps up business
May 30, 2014

Four years after consolidating large bus assembly at its central Georgia headquarters, Blue Bird has boosted efficiency and production capacity, and business is on the upswing. The company’s total sales have increased about 40% from 2012 to 2014, and its propane school bus sales have multiplied.

Texas district awarded for transportation performance
May 13, 2014
The Council of the Great City Schools honors the Houston Independent School District transportation department for exemplary use of technology, staff development and training, quick and efficient service, and resource stewardship.
Rotary Lift expands facility planning assistance
May 7, 2014
The vehicle lift supplier is increasing digital options in its free assistPRO service to give customers additional options for creating custom shop layouts. The number of shops taking advantage of the program has more than doubled over the past five years as the economy has improved, Rotary Lift officials say.
City approves $2.7M purchase of new school bus fleet
April 24, 2014
The Pittsfield (Mass.) City Council will trade in 52 buses and buy 43 new buses that Pittsfield Public Schools will own and operate. The district has also hired a consultant to do a one-month study of the fleet’s efficiency, which will help the next time it looks into buying a new fleet, and it could help in creating space for students who would pay to ride the buses.
DriveLogik monitors driver performance to improve behavior
April 2, 2014
The new technology, which can be used on school buses, features the Driver Awareness Panel, an in-vehicle display that provides drivers with coaching through visual and audible notifications to drive more efficiently. Company officials say that by helping to improve driving behavior, the product can deliver fuel savings of up to 10%.
Update: District switches to 3-tier transportation
March 26, 2014
The board at Minnesota’s South Washington County Schools approves a plan to adjust bell times from four to three tiers, which will go into effect for the 2014-15 school year. However, the board decides against shortening walking distances to the levels at which they had been up until last school year.
DOE: School bus plan could save $500K by end of year
March 20, 2014
A Hawaii Department of Education official says that the anticipated savings from Oahu’s school bus reform initiative, which is part of a statewide plan to overhaul the transportation program, is $100,000 more than what officials originally expected by the end of the 2013-14 school year. Meanwhile, the department is expanding service in the pilot area, which includes about 30 schools, while decreasing the number of buses in the fleet.
New Jersey district focuses on efficiency, staff appreciation
March 17, 2014
Since joining Green Brook Township Public Schools in 2008, Transportation Supervisor Nancy Farinella has been able to achieve annual cost savings ranging from $50,000 to more than $150,000 by making the operation more efficient while also bringing in an average of $125,000 per year in revenue for the district. She discusses how, along with her passion for her team.
Vehicle lifts that promote shop safety, productivity
March 11, 2014

Features such as mechanical locks, remote control, LED lighting and lighter weights for more portability make servicing buses even safer and more efficient.

First Student saves 3.2M gallons of fuel with DriveSmart
March 6, 2014
In a blog post on Tuesday, the company discusses this and other benefits of the initiative, which is designed to cut down carbon emissions while simultaneously improving safety. “Smart” stands for: Safe driving, Managing speeds, Avoiding rapid acceleration and hard braking, Reducing idling, and Talking to maintenance.
District may switch to 3 tiers, shorten walking distances
March 5, 2014
In an effort to prevent late buses and enhance transportation service, Minnesota’s South Washington County Schools is proposing to change from a four-tier bell time schedule to three tiers. Another change under consideration would be to reduce walking distances from 1.5 miles to 1 mile for middle school students and from 2 to 1.5 miles for high school students.
How to cut costs by mastering time and space, part 1
February 28, 2014

Manipulating time and space to optimize system design sets a foundation for efficiency in special-education transportation. Here is an introduction to the concept — and three examples in which its application could have saved countless dollars.

Mutual respect strengthens driver-technician relations
February 25, 2014

Clear communication is also essential to a solid working relationship between these groups of employees. In-service or safety meetings provide an opportunity for growth in these areas by allowing drivers to learn about their buses and ask the techs questions. Drivers must also be proactive in reporting maintenance concerns.

Seattle district approves busing cuts, arrival time changes
February 10, 2014
Seattle Public Schools’ board members sign off on a transportation plan for 2014-15 that includes shifting bus arrival times back by about 10 minutes (a previous proposal called for adding 10 minutes to the start time of middle and high schools). Also, board members approve ending transportation service to option school students who live outside that school’s middle school attendance area, among other measures.
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