5 Ways to Reduce School Bus Transportation Costs
published on May 20, 2016 by Sonia Mastros
School districts across North America are experiencing the realities of shrinking budgets. Unfortunately, when budgets are slashed, transportation departments are often the hardest hit. As students and parents consider the impact of canceled field trips and discontinued programs, transportation departments are scrambling to find solutions. Here are five ways your district can reduce school bus transportation costs while keeping the needs of your students in mind.
1. Reduce the number of buses used.
Operating buses is expensive. They require more fuel and maintenance than standard vehicles. By reducing the amount of buses your district has in its fleet, the cost of everything from insurance to tires is reduced. This might sound like an impossible feat, but it can be done through consolidation and efficient planning.
2. Consider alternative fuels.
Switching to alternative fuels is another way to save districts money while reducing their impact on the environment. Certain fuels are more efficient, while others are less expensive. Some districts choose to retrofit their buses, while others purchase buses that are equipped to utilize alternative fuel sources as buses are aged out of their fleet.
3. Utilize effective planning to coordinate the best routes.
Advances in technology have allowed districts to utilize specialized software programs to maximize the effectiveness of their routes. These programs help minimize school bus transportation costs by cutting down on the staff time needed to plan routes and helping districts make the most out of limited resources by finding alternative routes that save money without compromising student safety.
4. Cut down on staff overtime.
While bus route optimization software helps scale back administrative time, GPS software can help eliminate driver overtime. Real-time bus tracking alerts administrators to unauthorized stops and deviations in bus routes. This helps to keep overtime under control while ensuring student safety.
5. Maximize funding reimbursements.
When every penny counts, maximizing the amount of money received from state reimbursements is vital. By accurately tracking student ridership and submitting department of education reports in a timely manner, your school district will have access to more resources.
To learn more about programs that can save your school district transportation department money by using school bus routing software, contact the transportation experts at BusBoss.
Has your school district developed strategies that have cut costs? We’d love to hear from you. Please share your comments below.