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March 2013 Issue


How to make the most of technician training

By Kelly Roher

Tech-to-tech instruction and partnering with neighboring school districts for training exercises provide easy opportunities to develop employees’ skills and knowledge. Having good equipment and taking advantage of resources available through state pupil transportation associations are also worthwhile.

Healthcare reform: determining full-time employees

Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, large employers, such as school bus contractors, must offer affordable and minimal value healthcare insurance to full-time staffers by Jan. 1, 2014, or tax penalties will be imposed. Guidance from several federal agencies shows when employees must be treated as full time based on their work hours and employment timeframes, with examples for existing and new personnel.

Horlock points to growth in propane business for Blue Bird

With Blue Bird recently netting its biggest-ever order of propane school buses — more than 400 — President and CEO Phil Horlock is ebullient about the fuel’s potential. Here, he discusses alternative fuels, the state of school bus sales and other pertinent topics.

Contractors on school busing now, and what lies ahead

In this roundtable, executives from several school bus companies discuss driver shortage, the potential for growth in the contractor market this year, and what impact legislative issues — at the national and state levels — will have on their business, and on the industry as a whole.

Editorials

Charles Poland: A tribute to a fallen hero

In its definition of the word “hero,” Webster’s notes that it is “especially one who has risked or sacrificed his life.” Charles sacrificed his life to protect his kids — the passengers on his school bus.

Alarm aims to prevent bus rolling incidents

A school district and a bus dealership in Indiana have combined efforts to develop a retrofit for school buses that they say enhances safety. The alarm sounds if a driver unfastens his or her seat belt and has not engaged the air brake parking system.

Fit for the job

You may feel like you can’t make time to exercise, but if you do, you just might find yourself more focused and productive while you’re working.

NAPT News & Views — School bus safety and security: creating the 'new normal'

Periodically in our national life, safety, security or both are compromised in ways that are profoundly impactful. These are the game-changers that invoke a shared emotional call to “do something.” The tragedy in Newtown, Conn., was such an event. After the passionate debate about school security options, a “new normal” will eventually emerge, because the status quo is no longer acceptable.

Key performance indicators — where to start?

Often, just by tracking and displaying results, employees become more aware of their own influence on the measurements.

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