SAVANNAH, Ga., (WSAV) — Kids headed back on the buses and into the classroom on Thursday. Many say it was a lot smoother than the past. The students were excited to hit the books after a nine week summer break.
However, some parents dreaded the first day back on the buses due to past issues.
This year seems to be different, after speaking with Deputy Superintendent Chief Operation Officer, Vanessa Kaigler. “We took a different approach to transportation this year, we made sure that we engaged, the community on the front end,” Kaigler said.
She’s says she worked extremely hard to ensure a stress-free first day. Just last year they made the transition from a transportation company to turn it over to the district. In only four months this department made a multi-million dollar renovation. It wasn’t easy, “We assessed ourselves this year. We looked at what we needed to implement, some changes, improve on some of the processes,” Kaigler said.
That’s not all they did to improve this year. They also, had some training within the department to improve customer service, work with the bus drivers to ensure they met state requirements, and new automated systems. She says the automated system is one of the biggest improvements they’ve made. This automated system allows parents to call to get real time tracking on buses.
According to Kaigler,”What we did is we wanted to make sure our routes were real time, it’s as accurate as possible. You can either go to the district website or the school website.”
They say that tracking system kept complaints down. Thursday, was the first day of school and they only received 789 reports. Last year they received more 4,000 on the first day, last year.
“We had no incidents we had no accidents this morning. And that’s our goal. It’s to be accident free. That’s how we roll,” said Kaigler.
They are still making more changes and improvements. next year they hope to improve tracking so parents will know when kids get on and off the bus.