Back on Sept. 21, 2021, we rolled out the inaugural episode of School Bus Fleet’s first official video podcast, The Route.
Every week or so, we aim to share the top headlines from schoolbusfleet.com or introduce busy viewers to knowledgeable folks from the student transportation industry. We try to keep it to 15 minutes or less. You can watch on YouTube or listen on Spotify or Apple Podcasts.
One year later, we’ve pushed past our first goal of 100 subscribers on our YouTube channel. Thanks to everyone who subscribed so far, and to those who’ve helped spread the word about The Route. It’s much appreciated. So much so that I’ve revealed the recipe for my late father’s glorious cheeseberry pie to celebrate the occasion. (You’ll find it accompanying this editor’s note.)
We’re not quite at the 50-episode mark yet, but we’re close enough that I feel safe picking several favorites from the earliest journeys of The Route:
Episode 2: Short Staffed or Short Changed?
This episode, featuring guest Stephen Owens from the Georgia Budget and Policy Institute, gave me a great opportunity to dive into the bus driver shortage crisis as schools returned from pandemic shutdowns.
Episode 18: Treat Techs Right
In this installment, I was grateful for insights from experts like Carol Bowes of Person County Public Schools in North Carolina and the late Michael Stotler from Thomas Built Buses about recommended methods for hiring and keeping talented school bus technicians on staff.
Episode 20: Lowering Hurdles
Brianna Walsh of Enel X joined The Route for this episode, which explored the barriers school districts might face when considering bus fleet electrification, and how to overcome those obstacles.
Episode 26: Clean Start Ahead
In May 2022, as the Environmental Protection Agency finally revealed the details of its ambitious Clean School Bus Program initiative, we devoted an episode just to laying out the available specifics about the rebate plan.
Episode 41: Watery Heights
This August episode, featuring guest Curt Macysyn from the National School Transportation Association, was an informative debrief about the Niagara Falls annual meeting, a look ahead at the fall meeting in Florida, a refresher on back-to-school safety when it comes to school buses, and a remembrance of U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski, who had just recently died in a car crash.
Episode 44: Be the One
In this recap episode, besides news of HopSkipDrive landing a major amount of Series D funding and the return of in-person IC Bus University, we talked about Jim Troiola, a Maine school bus driver and Navy veteran who was elected national commander of the American Legion. His focus for his year of service in this role: fighting veteran suicides and promoting mental health.
We’ve got more to come.
Next stop: 250 subscribers. When we hit that goal, expect a recipe for my favorite Cuban dish: ropa vieja.