Tech enhancing school transportation for efficiency, safety
- Alongside turning school buses into literal vehicles for expanding WiFi access to students, technology is helping bus drivers complete their routes more efficiently and safely, EdTech: Focus on K-12 reports.
- GPS and tracking apps are helping parents in districts like Ohio's Alliance City School District monitor where the school bus is at any given time, providing an estimated time of arrival, while Youngstown City School District's Z-Pass cards use a sensor to track which students are on which bus and whether they should be.
- Meanwhile, some Connecticut schools are implementing sensors that monitor the condition of things like brake responsiveness and emergency doors, as well as cameras that monitor both student and driver conduct.
While technological efforts to improve school safety often get the most attention when they occur within school walls, efforts that improve students' trips to and from school can't be overlooked. From making it easier for parents to monitor when the bus will arrive so students don't miss their ride to ensuring bus drivers don't end up in a situation where they finish their route to find a sleeping child who missed his or her stop, tech is improving the ability to monitor students.
But GPS and camera tech can also help district administrators evaluate bus drivers for safety in addition to helping law enforcement catch other drivers who don't observe traffic safety regulations around buses that are loading or unloading students. And mapping technology can also conceivably help districts rework those routes to prevent bus crowding, avoid traffic, and adjust for better timing from start to finish, keeping students on the bus for as little time as possible in the mornings and afternoons.
- EdTech: Focus on K-12 Technology Optimizes School Bus Routes and Enhances Safety
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