CLIFTON PARK, N.Y. — After 14 years at Bethlehem Central School District (CSD), Al Karam has transitioned to a different — and bigger — district.
Last week, Karam became director of transportation for Shenendehowa Central Schools in Clifton Park, about 20 miles north of Delmar-based Bethlehem CSD.
In his new position, Karam will oversee a significantly larger fleet and about twice as many employees. He told SBF that Shenendehowa's transportation department has 202 school buses and about 300 employees, while Bethlehem has 123 buses and 153 transportation employees.
Karam came to Bethlehem CSD in 2000 after a 25-year career in the Marines. He initially served as Bethlehem's assistant director of transportation. In 2002, he was promoted to director.
Karam has earned a reputation for his businesslike approach to pupil transportation, including the use of key performance indicators to increase efficiency. At Bethlehem CSD, his team was able to reduce its overall transportation budget by about $900,000 for the 2012-13 school year.
In 2013, SCHOOL BUS FLEET named Karam its Administrator of the Year.