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Transportation Sec. LaHood promotes school buses on blog
July 28, 2011
Following his address at the NSTA meeting last week and a Love the Bus event in February, the U.S. transportation chief continues to spread the word about the advantages of pupil transportation. School bus service providers, he writes, “are connecting America's children with all of the great opportunities that come from the chance to learn, grow and succeed at school.”
Trade show attendees look over the Next Generation Propane-Powered Vision, which was unveiled in Reno on Tuesday.
Execs discuss cost, safety benefits of new propane bus
July 28, 2011
SBF sits down with officials from Blue Bird, Ford and ROUSH after they unveil the Next Generation Propane-Powered Vision, which they say offers fuel savings of 30 to 40 percent on average compared to diesel counterparts.
County cracks down on school traffic safety
July 28, 2011
The zero tolerance campaign will focus on school bus stop zones and school speed zones. The campaign will put on-shift and special traffic patrols throughout Tipton County in Tennessee to enforce traffic safety. Seat belt use and distracted and impatient driving will be targeted.
Second part of anti-bullying training program available
July 28, 2011
"Creating a Supportive Bus Climate: Preventing Bullying" from the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools' program focuses on building mutual respect on the school bus by providing strategies to cultivate positive relationships.
Tags: bullying, NAPT
Maryland allots $550K for school bus safety efforts
July 27, 2011
Forty-six agencies statewide will receive a total of $548,411 in grants from the Maryland School Bus Safety Enforcement Fund to put toward police overtime to enforce bus safety laws or driver education activities. The money for such projects is designed to help reduce the incidence of illegal bus passing in the state.
District to convert school bus fleet to run on natural gas
July 27, 2011
Officials at Florida-based Leon County Schools say the district will transition 44 buses to compressed natural gas by August 2012, and they hope to transition the entire fleet to natural gas within five to 10 years. The move is part of a partnership with Nopetro, a company that is working to build a natural gas fueling station for the district and will share back royalties from private sales.
Operations partner to offer school transportation alternatives
July 26, 2011
Edwardsville School District 7 and Madison County Transit in Illinois are providing students with alternatives for transportation to school: SchoolPool, which helps parents and high school students meet people and develop carpools, and the Walking School Bus, in which groups of adults supervise students walking to school.
Hawaii increases school bus fees to offset budget cuts
July 26, 2011
The state Board of Education votes unanimously to increase the bus fare for public school students from 50 cents to $1.25 for a one-way ride. The increase is needed to make up for a $9.6 million legislative cut in funding for student transportation.
Former NSTA staff member embarks on new career
July 26, 2011
Danielle Abe, who served as director of marketing and operations for the school bus contractors group, left the NSTA last Friday. She will be executive director of the American League of Lobbyists effective Jan 1, 2012, where she will be responsible for the league's 2012 membership drive, program development and financial management.
Tags: NSTA
Nominate an outstanding school bus administrator
July 25, 2011
Do you know an exemplary school transportation director who deserves some recognition for his or her efforts? We’re getting ready to select a recipient for our 2011 Administrator of the Year award, and we’re accepting nominations.
Blue Bird to initiate commodity surcharge
July 22, 2011
The surcharge of $1,400 will take effect on new orders placed after Aug. 4, 2011. Officials for the school bus manufacturer say that while the company has been able to offset a substantial portion of global commodity price increases, with the magnitude of the increases the surcharge has become necessary.
With end of Minnesota shutdown, bus inspections restart
July 21, 2011
State director Lt. Ed Carroll says that bus inspections should now resume as scheduled prior to the government shutdown. His office is working on a plan to catch up on the inspections that were missed over the past 21 days.
Software function displays vehicle maintenance history
July 21, 2011
Arsenault Associates' Instant Recall, a new function of its Dossier asset maintenance management software, automatically displays maintenance history information when a new repair order is initiated. This reduces rework and saves time, according to company officials.
Texas district approves fare-based bus system
July 21, 2011
Keller Independent School District's board of trustees meets to address $32 million in budget cuts, and establishes a pay-for-ride bus service to replace the free service. The new service offers a monthly payment option for parents.
SBF Publisher Frank Di Giacomo (left) presents the Contractor of the Year award to Kevin Clifford of Huntington Coach Corp. At right is new NSTA President Magda Dimmendaal.
Photo by Wim Dimmendaal
Kevin Clifford named Contractor of the Year
July 21, 2011
The president of Huntington Coach Corp. in New York has a passion for saving money for school districts and for growing the school bus contractor presence in the industry. Clifford and other contractors are honored at NSTA's awards ceremony.
NASDPTS responds to article on school bus advertising
July 20, 2011
The state directors association sends a letter to an official at the National Education Association explaining its reasons for opposing bus ads, and offers its support to the education association on efforts to maintain school bus ridership. The letter is in response to an article published in NEA Today that discusses school districts that permit advertising on the exterior of their buses and the money that’s been generated as a result of it.
Jim Vermillion, who recently retired from Jay School Corp. in Portland, Ind., is pictured here on the day he got his last new school bus, a 2009 Blue Bird unit — one of the operation's first air-conditioned models. Photo courtesy of Jay School Corp.
School bus driver retires after 60 years
July 20, 2011
Jim Vermillion drove four generations of families in Indiana over the course of his career. He discusses with SBF his first bus and his experiences behind the wheel. The transportation director at the school corporation where he worked praises his work ethic and attitude.
Navistar Parts products to be sold on Amazon.com
July 20, 2011
The company’s PARTSMART parts, which are used for International and IC Bus brand vehicles and MaxxForce brand diesel engines, can be ordered through the e-commerce site. Customers can customize their shipping preferences, see product reviews and use a variety of payment options.
Tags: IC Bus
NHTSA assessing pedestrian safety around hybrid vehicles
July 19, 2011
Possible rulemakings include requiring electric and hybrid vehicle makers to add sounds that alert the visually impaired and other pedestrians when these vehicles are operating at low speeds. A NHTSA spokesperson confirms that school buses would be included.

Tags: NHTSA
U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood (left) spoke to attendees of the National School Transportation Association (NSTA) convention Tuesday morning. He is pictured here with NSTA President Donnie Fowler. 
 Photo by Wim Dimmendaal
LaHood speaks at NSTA convention
July 19, 2011
The U.S. transportation secretary addresses attendees, discussing the safety record of school buses and other related issues. Also at the Baltimore event, school bus drivers from across the U.S. and Canada vie for the top spot in three categories during the association's annual School Bus Driver International Safety Competition.

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