Tyler Technologies has launched Tyler Drive, a software and hardware solution that is designed to turn the school bus into a mobile transportation management terminal.

Tyler Drive provides turn-by-turn directions that keep school bus drivers on the planned route, helping ensure the driver services each stop along the route even if a turn or stop is missed. The solution also manages student ridership, employee timekeeping, and mandated pre- and post-trip vehicle inspections. These features are integrated in real time with the Tyler transportation solution at use in the district, Versatrans Routing & Planning or Tyler Traversa.

According to Tyler, this onboard solution was created to close gaps in student transportation, make it easy to acclimate new or substitute drivers to unfamiliar routes, help provide complete documentation for Affordable Care Act reporting and state reimbursement, and stem the losses caused by outdated timekeeping software.

The system comes loaded on a semi-rugged tablet with 4G LTE connectivity specifically designed to withstand the rigors of the school bus environment.

"Tyler Drive helps districts deal with some of the major issues challenging transportation departments today like driver shortages and reporting compliance," said Ted Thien, senior vice president and general manager for Tyler's transportation group.

Other Tyler Drive features include:

•    Navigation: The detailed map shows the highlighted route and provides audio and visual step-by-step instructions to reach the next scheduled stop. Route data can be imported directly from either Versatrans or Traversa. Routes changes can be processed at the transportation office and then pushed over the air to the tablet in real time.
•    Rerouting capabilities: The device helps drivers handle unanticipated road closures or missed stops by providing alternate, real-time routing to the planned destination, while maintaining route integrity with safety policies such as right-side routing and walk-to-stop distances.
•    Student identification and support: As the bus arrives at the scheduled stop, Tyler Drive displays the students boarding or disembarking, as well as any special student support information, along with their photo, address, grade, and school name. Drivers can use the built-in touch screen or the system can be integrated with scan technology, creating a digital record of when and where the student entered or exited the vehicle.
•    "Mobile Lock" option: allows the screen to be blocked while the bus is in motion. Drivers can rely on the audio instructions to reach the next stop.

In addition, Tyler Drive prompts drivers to take state-mandated breaks and requires drivers to document their breaks to help districts track full-time and part-time employees for Affordable Care Act reporting and state reimbursement.

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