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Updated Transportation Info: Addition of Out-of-Zone Routes, Stops, and Satellite Pick-up Points

This week the Transportation Department has been working with parents to ensure all students requiring transportation are paired with a bus. The superintendent has approved additional satellite stops to be established to accommodate the growing needs of several programs, including gifted, Schools of Choice, and parochial schools. By increasing the number of satellite stops, the district is reducing the number of students at each stop, and the stops are closer to residential clusters of students. Most in-zone routes are complete and will not change.

The district has been successful in establishing a routing system that serves students while remaining time and cost efficient. Satellite stops were determined using historic stops, ridership, and parcel clusters. The Transportation Department has implemented a new software, Tyler Technologies/Versatrans, to target large clusters for appropriate stop locations. The district has received cooperation for all locations that used for our satellite stops.

The bus routing software has not been changed in over 20 years. Typically, the only change that would occur for bus riders would be a bus driver name or number. Parameters established in the new routing software follows School Board walk-stop and satellite stop policy. The previous software could not accommodate those requirements. Once the routes were established, they were posted for bidding. Once the bids were completed, and we confirmed every bus had a driver, we then paired the schools and the students in the system with the appropriate bus.

Staff will work through the weekend to make all the changes that have been approved for additional stops and routes. Once new routes and stops are established, it could take 24-48 hours for any updates to refresh in the system. Beginning Monday these updated routes should be available on e- Link or Parent Portal. Parents are asked to continue to monitor student routes. The district will continue to respond to unexpected needs for additional satellite stops or routes.

As a reminder, the Transportation Department will be available to answer questions or concerns on Monday, August 7, from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Federal Building at the district’s Central Office location on Chaplin Dr.