FORT MYERS, Fla. — A school district here is making a bus tracking app available to students and parents starting with the upcoming school year.
The School District of Lee County is rolling out Where’s The Bus, which will allow users to track their bus to their stop in the morning and in the afternoon, according to a news release from the district.
“The Where’s the Bus app puts the power of information right into our students’ and parents’ hands,” said Robert Codie, executive director of transportation services for the district. “Using the app can help eliminate questions about when a student’s bus will arrive at their stop by showing exactly where it is. This kind of real-time data will assist students getting to school and parents getting to work on time in the morning, and home in the afternoon.”
Schools can also use the app to track buses in the morning and prepare for any last-minute arrivals. In the afternoon, they can use the app to determine when all buses are ready for loading without having to be at the loading location.
The app’s security features only allow parents and guardians to track their students’ bus, the district said in the news release.
Information about downloading and signing up for the app will be provided to parents as the school year starts.
Codie told Fort Myers News-Press that about 50,000 students ride the district’s school buses every day, and that the app introduction process will take time due to the number of students involved.
“While we can’t wait for our parents to use Where’s the Bus, we do expect the districtwide rollout to take the first quarter of the year,” Codie said in the district’s news release. “We just ask for some patience during the first few months of school.”
Where’s The Bus was tested in a pilot program in May at Heights Elementary School. Parents gave it positive reviews and school staff found it helpful, according to the school district. The pilot's success convinced the district to spend the $35,000 a year to make the app available to all students and parents. The budget is set for final approval in September.
View a demonstration of the app below.