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Articles/News - School Bus Management / Training

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Robust program planned for U.K. transport conference
May 7, 2014
Interchangeability 2014 will be held in Buckinghamshire, England, June 15-18, and officials say attendees will be able to choose from more than 35 seminars and workshops that will cover such topics as planning for the future, how to deliver more with less and how to include young people with special needs in transportation planning. Organizers say that U.S. and Canadian pupil transportation delegates are encouraged to attend.
Ron Latko to retire from Arizona school district
May 6, 2014
Latko, who has served as director of transportation at Mesa Public Schools for eight years, will retire at the end of this school year. He reflects on his career and tells SBF what lies ahead for him: school transportation consulting work.
Transportation veteran made mark in training, new facility
May 5, 2014
Sharon Schalk was a driving force in training Washington's school bus driver instructors, and she pushed for funding for a much-needed new transportation facility at her district. She died on April 25 after being diagnosed with cancer a few months earlier.
Seon announces anti-bullying grant recipients
May 1, 2014
The mobile surveillance supplier selects seven recipients for its anti-bullying grant and The Bully Project Educator’s DVD and Toolkits. Twelve more grant applicants are awarded The Bully Project Educator’s DVD and Toolkits.
Texas district holds driver attendance contest
May 1, 2014
The attendance competition among Houston Independent School District's four bus terminals was timed during a week of state testing for students. District officials say that the goals were to make sure students got to school on time and to show drivers "how important their role is in the students’ success."
NAPT News & Views — Winter 2014: Yellow buses completed their appointed rounds
May 1, 2014

Winter this year was particularly challenging, with storm after storm dumping massive snowfalls again and again, as far south as Atlanta. The lesson of this winter is an important one for policymakers everywhere: School buses are an indispensable community service.

Thomas Built Buses honors top dealers
April 30, 2014
Virginia's Sonny Merryman Inc. is named Thomas Built's Dealer of the Year for the fifth time. The school bus OEM also presents its Dealer Trainer of the Year award to Dave Nelson of Nelson’s Bus Service in Wisconsin.
Florida district’s transportation manager resigns
April 30, 2014
John Franklin steps down after seven years as general manager of transportation of Hillsborough County Public Schools. Officials say he led the transportation department through “an eventful time of change and challenges,” and they say that Chief Facilities Officer Chris Farkas will directly oversee the transportation department until Franklin’s replacement is hired.
Indiana school bus drivers award $500 scholarship
April 28, 2014
Corbin Sollman, son of Indiana State School Bus Drivers Association member Nikki Sollman, wins the association's annual scholarship. The high school senior's community service includes assisting with the building of a wheelchair ramp for a disabled person.
Pay raise proposed to help fill school bus driver shortage
April 28, 2014
At Greenville (S.C.) County Schools, starting school bus driver wages would increase 9.6%, from $11.68 to $12.80 per hour, under a budget proposal for fiscal year 2015. The move would be aimed at helping to attract and retain drivers.
Districts are in the transportation business
April 28, 2014

School districts’ primary responsibility is to educate children. But that doesn’t mean it’s their only responsibility. Pupil transportation is still a part of the overall service that the district provides for the public.

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.
Steve Gilliland to keynote NAPT Summit
April 24, 2014
The speaker will supply “motivation with a side of humor” during the National Association for Pupil Transportation conference in Kansas City, Mo., in November. The association says that Gilliland’s session will provide “a blueprint for getting the most out of life.”
Missouri district builds its own bus video systems
April 24, 2014
At Carl Junction R-1 School District, shop technicians put together four-camera surveillance systems for the district's school buses. The team recently began testing two additional cameras: one on the back of the bus and one underneath.
Child Check-Mate System debuts on Australian school buses
April 23, 2014
Kojonup Bus Service becomes the first contractor in Australia to adopt Child Check-Mate's reminder device. The company plans to equip its entire fleet with the system over the next few months.
District board approves bus fees, pending court approval
April 22, 2014
Hoover (Ala.) City Schools' board votes to implement school bus ridership fees for the 2014-15 school year, pending approval by the U.S. District Court. In a memorandum proposing the fees, Superintendent Andy Craig says a fee-based system would help the district “address the financial challenges we are facing.”
Louisiana, Texas bus drivers honored by school risk programs
April 21, 2014
Lillie Lewis of the Tensas Parish School Board receives the 2013-14 Statewide Bus Driver of the Year award from the Property Casualty Alliance of Louisiana, and Shelley Wilkenson of Midlothian (Texas) Independent School District receives the award from the alliance's Texas chapter. Awards given through this program are based on such driver attributes as leadership, attitude, perseverance, student and parent relationships, and technical skill.
HSM working on ‘next generation’ of school bus seating
April 21, 2014
In an exclusive interview with SBF, Tony Everett, vice president of transportation solutions at HSM, says that the company is developing a new school bus seat that will be lighter, more durable and more ergonomic. But beyond the more practical features, Everett says, “We want it to be a sexy school bus seat — we want it to be cool.”
How to manage conflict and deal with angry people
April 17, 2014

Employees can express anger and frustration when they feel that their basic needs, such as feeling appreciated and valued, are not being met. Managers and others in leadership roles must listen to gain an understanding of the problem, learn the points of view of those involved and work together with the employees toward a solution.

4 school districts named to '100 Best Fleets' list
April 16, 2014
District operations in Texas, Pennsylvania and Florida are among the fleets recognized for exemplary performance. One school bus fleet official says of the list, "Going through the application process helps us strive for perfection. I feel our operation is moving forward."

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