A renewed five-year contract is expected to help Coppell ISD increase bus transportation efficiency through added services.
The Coppell ISD Board of Trustees unanimously approved a five-year contract bus transportation with Durham School Services. The district aims to continue increasing efficiency in its transportation provided to students.
The renewed contract will include a student bus rider tracking system. This will ensure students are getting on the right buses and getting off at the right stops. Students will be provided a radio frequency identification bus pass that will be scanned when a student boards the bus. A light on the scanner will turn green if the student is supposed to board the bus and the light will turn red if the student is not supposed to be on the bus. Buses will be assigned fixed routes to determine who should and should not board. Students who scan in will be assigned a random identification number. The location data of the bus will, at the end of the day, be transferred to the district to analyze the number of students who boarded, where the bus went and how long the bus took to reach its stops.
Coppell ISD Chief Operations Officer Dennis Womack said the students’ personal information including addresses would not be shown when they scanned in and would remain protected.
“This is system a huge upgrade from not having one,” Womack said.
In keeping the five-year contract with Durham, it will see an annual adjustment of a maximum 3% fee increase – less than if the district changed service providers annually.
The contract will have a budgeted $4.157 million expense for bus transportation, around $100,000 more than last year, Womack said.
The district had budgeted $4.9 million this fiscal year to be allocated for bus transportation. Womack said the district is projecting to have saved around $450,000 from efforts to increase efficiency.
Bus drivers are expected to receive an additional $3 per hour due to staff shortages.
Each semester, the district will allow parents and students to provide community feedback on the new bus system. Womack said if the services are deemed unfavorable during the five-year contract, the district can terminate the contract with a 90-day notice.