Tag Archives: school bus routing

7 Advantages of Having a School Bus Routing Software

The ultimate aim of a school transportation system is to ensure that the students come to school and get back to home in a safe manner. Technology has always helped human beings solve many of their problems since the personal computer revolution in the 1980s.

Advances in the field of wireless communication have also contributed a great deal towards developing solutions to vexing problems. Now, the software may not be able to solve all the problems, but it can definitely help schools in alleviating school bus routing challenges.

Schools can add school bus routing software module to reap a lot of benefits. Here are some of them:

Also Read : How School Bus Routing Software Enhance School Transportation

 

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1. Cost Savings

Modern school bus routing software allows schools to save a significant amount of money across various aspects related to their bus operations. They include the following:

  • A substantial reduction in route sizes, theoretically to the extent of being in a position to cut an entire vehicle depending on the situation.
  • A great deal of savings in fuel costs across all of the school’s vehicles.
  • A shorter route contributes to reducing the wear and tear of the vehicles and extends their lifespan.
  • The collection and analysis of data at a central point enable school authorities to track and spot trends easily. This, in turn, allows them to sort out small issues such as reduced fuel efficiency. The warning signals help them to tackle the problems and devise solutions before they turn into difficult-to-handle headaches.
  • The driver tracking capability of the software allows schools authorities to easily identify the best and most cost-conscious drivers.

2. Planning

Another area in which the school bus routing software could make significant contributions is future planning. The integration of school bus routes into the redistricting process was generally being done as an afterthought because of the difficulty in quickly implementing large-scale changes.

Now, the availability of the school bus routing software makes it easier for the schools to manage their transportation changes up front along with the redistricting plan.

Schools can generate number of hypothetical route maps with the help of the software and identify the best routes, in line with redistricting plans, and make optimum routing recommendations in a timely manner to achieve great cost benefits.

The software helps to map the impact of changes in routes and clearly work out the costs involved. This helps the schools to choose the best routes that provide the desired cost benefits.

Similarly, the bus routing software also helps to ease the process of school closings. It has the potential to quickly redistribute the load across the remaining schools and thereby keep the costs incurred at the lowest possible levels.

3. Map Generation

It is not an easy task to draw a school bus route map by hand. Schools and districts that are not moving in tandem with technological change would have to make the concerned staff members to spend a great deal of time during their summer holidays moving strings and pushpins across maps in order to decide the best routes for the upcoming school year.

Moreover, the routes have to be changed during the midst of a semester due to the student movement.

The school bus routing software provides solutions in a matter of minutes, saving authorities months of manual work. All that the authorities have to do is feed database with the addresses of students and their needs and other required information.

The bus routing software will analyze several millions of possible routes within minutes and plot out the most optimum routes. The software can perform this analysis number of times and create hypothetical maps or optimize routes based on the school’s requirements or priorities.

4. Substitute Drivers

The requirement of substitute driver is dependent on the availability of the number of regular drivers. This is because drivers fall sick, go on a vacation, and have to deal with personal issues.

The school bus software’s optimization feature enables authorities to quickly find a substitute driver when one of the regular drivers is absent due to any of the reasons mentioned above. In this situation, the aspects to be considered are whether the driver has a license, knowledge of the routes, and experience in driving in those routes.

5. School Calendars

Timings, sessions, and holidays vary from one school to another. For example, the timings of public and private schools are not the same.

School bus routing software integrated with school calendars will be of great help in determining the best routes for specific days when only the public or schools is closed or working.

Some advantages of using the routing software in this respect would be as follows:

  • Identifies alternative routes depending on whether the private or public schools are working or closed.
  • Drivers will be informed of the routes well in advance.
  • Alerts can be sent to students and their parents to notify the changes instantaneously.

6. Real-time Weather Alerts

When changes in weather conditions causes damages to roads and make travelling on those roads risky, the software determines alternate routes so that students can be transported safely to and from the school.

The best part is that the software allows alerts regarding a change in route to be sent in real time, making things easy for students and their parents.

7. Driver License

School bus drivers are expected to keep their licenses valid all the time. The school bus routing software provides alerts when renewal is due for each driver as applicable. This enables authorities to avoid issues related to non-availability of drivers because of the expiry of their license validity.

Further, the software also enables driver background checks including criminal activities and child abuse, among others. Finally, the software can also be employed for implementing preventive and scheduled bus maintenance procedures so that it is possible to ensure that the buses are in good running condition.

Conclusion

This is not an exhaustive list of advantages that school bus routing software can provide. There are many other indirect benefits as well.

All said and done, the routing software is an invaluable tool for district and school administration authorities as it enables to improve operational efficiency and send customized alerts to students, and more importantly to parents so that they can safely and confidently go to and come back from their schools.

 

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9 Must-have School Bus Routing and Scheduling Software Features

Routing is a concern for the school bus transportation. And at times, student safety is also dependent on the school bus routing and scheduling. Nevertheless, several reputed schools have implemented the school bus routing and scheduling software for managing their school bus fleets efficiently.

Modern routing software is customizable in nature. And hence, schools are able to customize the software based on their requirements and provide enhanced service to parents and students. Moreover, it assists you to reduce unnecessary school transportation expenses. Check on the essential features of routing and scheduling software:

  • User-friendly interface

A school bus routing software is designed in a manner that is easy-to-access and it will be having a navigation-friendly GUI (Graphic User Interface). In addition to this, the software can be installed and updated comfortably. Apart from that, it is automatic, can be conveniently troubleshot, and do not require a third party software.

  • Effortless Registration

Users can swiftly generate their account by entering the essential details such as first name, last name, student's ID, class, parent's name, contact details, and username.

  • Implementation of GPS technology

With the GPS technology, you will be able to enhance student safety and operational efficiency. The customized software enables you to simplify and optimize route management task, curtail vehicle maintenance expenses, and manage student pick up and drop details.

  • Mapping options

Integration of the routing software with the Geo location and mapping feature improve the efficiency of school bus transportation. By utilizing the mapping feature, you will be able to view the current routes, determine the optimized route for the school trip, and receive guidance via the software. You should constantly update the software for augmenting the efficiency of maps, since the roads change rapidly.

  • Advanced user settings

With the advanced user settings, the user will be able to create, monitor, and confirm the school bus routing. Furthermore, each user has a specific role and priority. Based on their role and priority, the user settings will vary accordingly.

  • Route optimization

The routing software assists you to optimize school bus routes and avoid the time wasted for routing. With the software, you will be able to avoid the routes with heavy traffic, road construction, etc. and lead them to the alternative routes. Thus, the routes chosen by the system will be efficient and optimum one, which saves the valuable time of transport managers. 

  • Playback system for completed trips

With this feature, you will be able to track the historical movement of the vehicle. And, you can view the routes,  school buses that follow the scheduled route, the period at which the school bus exceed the speed limit. Also, the system enables you to control the speed of the movement and can be moved forwards or backwards.

  • Unplanned Trip Auto Routing

This feature permits the customer to run the vehicle first and the system will gather details regarding the trip, route, etc. The school authority will then create pickup points and assign the students. However, it is an apt method for schools, especially for the scheduling purpose.

  • Reports

The system assists you to create reports utilizing the data from the software. For instance, these reports can be further analyzed for measuring the progress of the business. And, the modern routing software enables you to download reports in various formats based on your needs.

As a matter of fact, the advent of school bus routing software lowered the complication in routing and scheduling the school bus. And, you are able to maintain a precise report on the school bus transportation and its safety.

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Essential Things Parents Should Know About School Bus Routing

School bus routing is a complicated process and intends to have a greater priority since it constitutes a vital role in ensuring student safety. Meanwhile, it demands proper planning and organization. Hence, it's high time for the parents to convince the gravity of the routing issue.

Ordinarily, the factors that should be considered while scheduling school bus routes include school bus capacity, the amount of riding hours spent by a student, and starting/ending time of schools.

Nevertheless, school bus routing is a prominent aspect in ensuring school bus safety. Presumably, school bus is the safest vehicle for ferrying school students. Moreover, you will definitely check for flashing lights, mirrors, high seat backs, readily detectable yellow paints, etc., which ensure additional safety for your children.
 

Notable facts on school buses

  • Millions of school buses exist all around the world

 

  • Each school bus eliminates approximately 36 cars on the road

 

  • School buses can prevent the utilization of 17 million cars on the road

 

  • A total of 346,666,660 car miles is saved by the school transportation
     

However, with the modern tracking apps, you will be able to monitor the school bus trip whenever you desire. In addition to this, you will also be able to procure data on the child's bus routing via the tracking apps. Based on these data, you can decide whether the school bus route is safe for your child or not. Apart from this, you will be able to receive real-time notification whenever there is a delay for the school bus transportation.

How to identify the safest bus stop near your residing location?

While deciding the bus stop, have a close consideration for the school bus safety. Consequently, an efficient school bus routing involves the procedure of determining the appropriate and safe bus stop for children, parents as well as drivers. Here follows certain tips for identifying the safest bus stop in your residing area:

 

  • Elude multi-lane roads
  • Try to avoid the bus route with railroad crossings
  • Select the bus stop that renders sufficient visibility for drivers and other road users
  • Choose the school bus routes with comparatively less traffic
  • Avoid the bus stops having the need to turn left hand side (it is a dangerous and risky task for school bus drivers)
  • Ignore the bus stops that require reversing of the school bus
  • Choose the bus stop near side stops in your residing area
  • Select the location with enough lighting during the early morning and early evening hours.


Recognize the merits of school bus routing software

Technology revolutionized the school bus transportation. As a responsible parent, it is your duty to recognize the latest features of school bus routing software. Here is a list of features that can be associated with the school bus routing software:

 

  • Permit different users to view, alter, and handle information
  • Automatically assign pick up and drop points of students
  • Plan school bus transportation
  • Route optimization and pick up point optimization
  • Obtain historical data of school bus routing
  • Generate annual maintenance data
  • Effortless installation procedure
  • Reports on daily pick up and drop
  • Setting up a calendar for each school
  • Ability to incorporate additional details on school bus routing maps

 

As a parent, your prime concern will be to safeguard your school kid from possible dangers. Hence, it is wise to acquire knowledge regarding the school bus routing concerns and the latest technologies that have been implemented in the school bus routing.

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