Carlos Chicas, Stockton Unified’s transportation director, passed along this information today by email:
“The district accepted delivery of seven 2013 Thomas C2 buses last week, which will allow us to independently service more special needs students and rely less on contracted services. Over the past 2 ½ years the Transportation Department has achieved approximately $675,000 of ongoing general fund savings by providing more cost efficient in-house transportation services.
“Also on the board agenda tonight, the district will consider awarding a contract to Zonar Systems for an integrated GPS system on all SUSD school buses. Like an air traffic control for our ground based fleet, the system will provide Transportation administrators with a real-time picture of fleet operations. Data such as excessive idling time, speed, path, or entering of a prohibited area will be immediately transmitted to Transportation officials. The system will also give the district the ability to quickly and easily track where and when students enter and exit their buses. Students will be issued a unique RFID card to carry. As they board and exit the bus the time, date and location is logged and immediately transmitted to a secure database. It is designed to track and monitor student ridership in a safe and non-intrusive way. Many calls to school and Transportation come from parents wondering if and when their student got on or off the bus. With the integration of this system schools will be able to provide accurate and immediate answers, freeing up hours of admin time.”