WISD switches up its transportation

Posted Monday, Apr. 15, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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After receiving bids from five transportation companies, including its current Durham School Services, the Weatherford ISD unanimously decided to award a five-year contract to First Student.

First Student is based in Cincinnati, Ohio, and will take over in the 2013-14 school year.

At Thursday’s meeting, before the vote was taken, drivers with Durham spoke in open forum for the third time in the past few months about their unhappiness with how they were being treated by the company. Outside, drivers held a sign that read, “Weatherford ISD Dump Durham.”

In a statement released by Weatherford ISD, Lance Guy, Business Development Manager for First Student, said the company will hire the current Durham drivers and staff that meet First Student’s qualifications and will add additional drivers and staff from the local area. Each new First Student driver will undergo an extensive training program before transporting any students. This training consists of classroom, behind-the-wheel and safety-orientation training.

First Student provides a fleet of 53 buses equipped with GPS tracking systems, Child Check-Mate™ electronic reminder systems and crossing gates to allow children to cross in front of the bus at a safe distance. The buses serving WISD will also have cameras to monitor on-board activities.

Guy said student safety is a core value at First Student as the company continues to invest millions in equipment, technology and driver training.

Also, in open forum, Dr. Tom Novak, D.D.S. and Donna Dickinson spoke in support of the upcoming bond election May 11. Novak said his children’s success in college, school and life were a direct result of WISD and that the bond will bring people to Weatherford who see “education as a priority.”

“Those are people I want [in my town],” Novak said.

Dickinson, who is in charge of a political action committee, echoed Novak’s sentiments noting that she is “very passionate” about the Career and Technology building.

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