Image Courtesy of Getty Images

Image Courtesy of Getty Images

Managing students’ personal or medical information can be a challenging task for student transportation administrators. They must maintain a critical balance of student information accuracy, timeliness, security, and accessibility to ensure that student experiences are positive, and their needs are met. Using this information effectively helps to ensure the best transportation plans and outcomes for students. From adhering to data protection laws and regulations to maintaining open communication with teachers and parents, managing special needs student information requires a high level of attention to detail, confidentiality, and collaboration. With the right technology solutions, managing these challenges can be simplified, and students can be served more effectively. But what outcomes should a transportation director look for to measure success when serving students with special needs?

1. Safety

With a comprehensive plan in place to address their unique needs, student transportation administrators are set up for success to ensure students’ safety and well-being. Transportation professionals receive training on required accommodations and specialized equipment, such as wheelchair lifts, harnesses, and safety vests, to ensure they can transport students safely.

2. Access

Effective management of special transportation needs ensures that all students have access to the education they deserve and are entitled to. Transportation is a critical component of the school experience, providing students with the opportunity to attend classes or participate in extracurricular activities. With reliable and accessible transportation, schools can help students with special transportation needs have the same opportunities as their peers. Equity and inclusion are the goal.

3. Communication

Effective communication between parents, teachers, and transportation providers is critical to keep everyone on the same page and promptly address any issues or concerns. This can help to minimize stress and anxiety for both the students and their families, and it helps to ensure transportation plans continue to support students appropriately.

Supporting Students With Technology Solutions

Departments across a school district use specialized software and technology to accomplish their goals, and everyone’s goal is to support the students. How can schools access the accurate data needed to provide suitable transportation plans?

When a district uses technology from a single vendor, sharing data can be easier and more secure. Tyler Technologies, the largest software provider exclusively serving the public sector, offers multiple solutions for school districts. Tyler’s Student Transportation software suite is an all-in-one solution that empowers school districts to track and report on all the important details of their special transportation services. With solutions to manage vehicle accommodations, student addresses, and schedules, special fields to log specific needs, and a parent communication mobile application, students and parents can feel confident that their unique needs will be met.

In addition to accuracy, any technology used to manage student data should be secure. Districts not using a Tyler transportation management solution — or who require additional software to work alongside their Tyler solution — can support data security by working with a vendor partner of Tyler’s Onboard iPaaS (integration platform as a service). This API service connects data between transportation vendors, ensuring secure and reliable access. To help districts stay ahead of cyberattacks that put their student data at risk, Tyler also offers cybersecurity solutions that can monitor networks and provide advisory services.

Achieving Better Outcomes and Experience for the Student Riders

Managing school transportation details for students with special transportation needs is a critical aspect of ensuring the highest level of safety and service, offering a more inclusive environment to the community, promoting their education, and supporting their independence. Providing appropriate transportation arrangements can help students learn to navigate the world with greater confidence, improve their overall quality of life, and even set them up for greater success in the future. By using technology solutions to develop a comprehensive plan that meets their unique needs, school transportation departments can help to provide a stable, trustworthy environment for all students.

For more information about software and solutions offered by Tyler Technologies, visit