For the past few months, the school district in its entirety has begun to work on a new system for transportation, called “SMART Tags.” Essentially, SMART Tags are a new add-on to student IDs, enabling the school to know where a student is during transportation periods. This ensures that students get where they need to go.
“We became aware of this product about five years ago and districts using the system have consistently shared positive feedback,” District Director of Transportation Pam Swanks said. “This was the primary reason for our recommendation for our district to use a ridership management system.”
Indeed, the district had been planning to modify the school transportation system for years. With the ID card system, organizing students and safely transporting them could be made a lot easier. This also shows how schools are taking advantage of new technology to help aid faculty and students.
“The system provides safety and security in several ways with the primary benefit of ensuring that students are getting on the right bus and getting off the bus at the right stop,” Swanks said.
As of this moment, the system is nearly implemented, with plans to wrap up by the end of the year.
“As soon as students and drivers are familiar with and using the system with regularity, we will direct the company to activate the campus and parent portals,” Swanks said. “It is our hope to have this activated around the Thanksgiving break.”
While COVID-19 has caused delays, the project has had no major difficulties. The “portals” mentioned will be online website hubs for people to gather information on the new system. Think of them as customer service. Reflecting on the idea of the project, the end goal is to create a safe system to easily manage school owned transportation systems.
“I am very excited about the benefits this technology will offer to our families and our district staff,” Swanks said.
By Alec Stuart, News Editor