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23Mar2018

What is the Role of School Bus Transportation Manager

One cannot deny the role of a school transport manager in the overall education system. His role is synonymous with the words like ‘responsibility,’ ‘accountability’ and ‘ownership.’

Parents look up to the efficiency of a transport manager when they send their children to school. They send them with the complete trust that their child is in the safe hands and no unfortunate incident will take place while he is en route to school or home.

A transport manager must possess the following:

1.    A commercial driver license

2.    Experience of managing a school transport system for at least 3-4 years

3.    Excellent communication and an agile attitude

4.    Technology proficiency to lead GPS mapping tracking system

5.    Physical fitness and no criminal background

With multiple roles entrusted to a transport manager, he is a crucial person in any school administration.

Since transport system is vital to any school and it speaks volume about the school’s focus on child’s safety, therefore a good school never compromises with the role of a transport manager.

The various roles a transport manager is expected to play:

1. Transport Management

While other roles are equally important, the primary role of a transport manager is transport management of a school.

It includes managing the entire fleet of buses, deciding their route, dispatch and schedule, driver and other transport department staff management, optimum fuel consumption management, overall operations management of transport department.

It further includes route planning, developing a bus timetable and ensuring the maximum safety of children to and from school.

2. Compliance and Norms

A transport manager is assigned the responsibility of adhering to all district and transport compliances, norms and to complete all the legal formalities required to perform bus transport service of a school.

The transport manager also coordinates with District personnel to transport student to special education functions. He is also expected to prepare all reports vital to be submitted to the district office and the RTO.

3. Vehicle Repair and Maintenance

Although a transport manager is a person who is not in the forefront of school management as he is not a part of the academic department, but the importance of his role cannot be denied.

He oversees timely maintenance and repair of all buses to ensure that the safety of the child is taken seriously. He maintains a record of all the services that the buses have undergone.

In case he comes across any discrepancy, he is expected to inform the management of the school to take an immediate action.

He also decides for the purchase of any crucial equipment for the buses and keeps a check on the upkeep of buses to ensure utmost safety of the children travelling daily in the buses.

4. Driver Management

Many drivers, conductors, and attendants report to the transport manager, and although they know their roles and responsibility well, a transport manager is also held accountable for their conduct and misbehavior.

He also plays the role of a recruitment person for drivers and checks whether the appointed person is suitable for the position or not. He checks his previous record, his conduct, and behavior from other schools where the driver has worked earlier.

He also trains the staff on how to communicate professionally with parents and even on general conduct and behavior.

He also ensures timely promotion and compensation revival for transport department staff and manages any unrest in the department that happens in the due course.

Developing training manual and maintaining training records are also few other responsibilities he is entrusted with.

5. Communication

An efficient and responsible transport manager is one who has impeccable communication skills and keeps an active communication between parents and transport department.

A flawless communication plays a vital role and the stronger the communication, the stronger shall be the faith of parents on the school system.

Informing parents about any change in bus route, schedule and even the driver or the attendant is the responsibility of school bus transportation manager and any deviation from his responsibility may adversely affect his job.

6. Crisis Management

The role of a transport manager becomes all the more critical in case of an unfortunate incidence like a breakdown or an accident.

It is his ability to manage the crisis and take immediate action to ensure that there is minimal loss and that every child reaches his home safely.

He should have contact details of all emergency services like repair and nursing homes. He should also keep number of doctors available on call and make sure that the incident does not have any far-reaching effect that impacts the goodwill of the school.

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