News that drew the most traffic on the School Bus Fleet website this year covered new guidelines for school transportation, the sale of First Student, and the widespread need for funding for the school bus industry amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
1. CDC Releases Guidance for Reopening Schools, Social Distancing on School Buses
The recommendations included seating one student every other row, increased cleaning and disinfecting of buses, and drivers wearing cloth masks.
2. NSTA Calls for School Transportation Funding During COVID-19 Shutdown
The National School Transportation Association urged governors and U.S. Department of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos to require support for school transportation through the end of the school closures.
3. First Student Parent Starts Process for Sale of North American Transportation Companies
FirstGroup PLC announced its launch of the sale process of its North American school bus and public transportation companies, after having considered selling the businesses since last year.
4. New Pa. Law Permits School Bus Contractor Payment Agreements During COVID-19 Crisis
Senate Bill 751 confirms that schools are permitted to negotiate interim agreements or contract amendments to pay school bus contractors.
5. NSTA Applauds U.S. Senate’s Passage of, School Transportation Funding in CARES Act
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act includes $30.75 billion for an “Education Stabilization Fund” for states, school districts, and institutions of higher education for costs related to the COVID-19 pandemic.