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Advertise in this news brief.
Visit the newly updated NAPT Summit website
Join us in Richmond, VA this Fall to hear fantastic keynote speakers like Mark Aesch, Siphiwe Baleka, Scott Burrows and Alex Sheen.
We're offering 13 different in-depth (3 hr) training classes and DOZENS of workshops.
Our trade show is AMAZING — it's 100,000 sq ft of the newest and most helpful products and services.
These are just some of the reasons why our event is THE school bus Summit.
Get it all for one low price.
Visit www.naptsummit.org for additional information.
Upcoming NAPT Webinars
We are officially halfway through our 2015 series of webinars, and we have had a great turnout so far! Remember, if you've missed any of our webinars, they are all recorded and available in the 'Member Resources' area of the Members' Only section of the website. Log-in today. Here's what else we have on the schedule for the year:
July 29: Transportation Technology: Don't Let It DRIVE You Crazy Register now!
September 30: Preparing Your Operation for Winter Register now!
October 28: Inside Washington: How and Why Democracy Begets Bureaucracy Register now!
Stay tuned for more information as we finalize our webinars for August and November!
Next up, Transportation Technology: Don't Let It DRIVE You Crazy! During this complimentary member webinar, we'll discuss:
Date & Time: Wednesday, July 29 @ 1pm ET
- Digital camera systems: How many cameras and where to mount them
- GPS systems: Passive or active systems
- GPS: Are you using it to your advantage?
Title: Transportation Technology: Don't Let It DRIVE You Crazy
Presenters: Steve Simmons, III, Director of Transportation, Columbus City Schools, NAPT President-Elect and Jeff Vrabel, Director of Fleet Services, Columbus City Schools
Registration Fee: FREE for NAPT members
Get 5 KPIs instantly with NAPT's 3D website
It's as easy as 1-2-3!
The end result is 5 free KPIs instantly! The over-arching goal of this dynamic website is to encourage student transportation professionals to speak a common language and make more data driven decisions.
- Visit the 3D website
- Download a data worksheet and compile the necessary information
- Enter your information in the system.
According NAPT President Keith Henry, CDPT, "One of our goals from the start has been to facilitate discussion and interaction among as many people as possible and give them a chance to participate in this project."
Have you joined NAPT's LinkedIn Group?
Your industry colleagues are only a few clicks away! Join NAPT's LinkedIn members' only group and start participating in discussions, post articles and share information with fellow leaders in the industry. Take a look, and see what fellow members are buzzing about with NAPT on LinkedIn!
Connect with NAPT
Let NAPT help you stay in touch with colleagues and up-to-date on industry news and interesting stories from around the nation.
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The Option CloudGate cellular gateway is perfect for school bus connectivity! Its flexibility allows school bus operators to:
Visit GetWireless or call (800) 990-9025 for a Free 30-day trial of CloudGate!
- Track buses (GPS)
- Gather engine/fuel data
- Offer student connectivity for homework (WiFi)
- Transfer security camera footage
- Transmit student badging data
TSA First Observer Program News
Transportation Security Administration
In 2012, the First Observer™ program transferred from a grant-supported training program to one that is now administered directly by TSA. To improve the program, First Observer™ has been undergoing an extensive re-development, and should be ready for a re-launch in the next few months. It will include revisions to all of the existing highway security modules, but will soon also include other transportation modes such as mass transit, freight rail and pipelines.
In the meantime, the original First Observer™ videos that reinforce the core principles of the program to "Observe, Assess and Report" suspicious activities remain valid, and can be viewed through the TSA website shown below. First Observer™ members are also encouraged to remain vigilant and call 911 and/or TSA as warranted.
Here are the changes TSA has made to the program thus far:
If you have any questions about the First Observer™ program, an informational flyer describing the First Observer Program is available here. We encourage you to share this flyer with co-workers or to post it in your place of employment.
- The telephone number for reporting incidents or observations to First Observer™ has changed. All calls (or texts) are now being received directly by TSA's Transportation Security Operations Center for immediate analysis. The new toll-free telephone number for First Observer™ is 866-615-5150.
- Text messages to this same number will be recognized, acted upon, and responded to;
- If preferred, an Email notification in lieu of a telephone call can be sent to the TSA at firstobserver@DHS.gov;
- Access to all First Observer™ modules for highway transportation sectors remains currently available on-line through the officially recognized government portal www.TSA.gov/firstobserver. Other sites purporting to be First Observer are not valid sites and should be avoided, as they may lead to viruses or other computer problems.
- Train-the-trainer modules are not currently available, but will be a robust part of the new program design.
Federal auditor finds broad failures at NHTSA
The New York Times
Even as evidence poured into the nation's top auto safety agency pointing to dangerous defects in millions of vehicles, regulators repeatedly failed for years to root out problems and hold carmakers accountable, according to a long-awaited internal audit by the Transportation Department. The bluntly worded report, ordered last year after General Motors began recalling 2.6 million cars with a defective ignition switch, paints a bleak portrait of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the agency charged with overseeing safety in the auto industry.
Gov. Baker restores $5 million to school transportation
Gov. Charlie Baker announced that he intends to restore $5 million of the $18.73 million that was cut from the regional school transportation account in January by the previous administration of Deval Patrick. A supplemental budget request for fiscal 2016 will include that money, according to the Baker administration. The $5 million is part of "our budget proposal," the governor said in a statement. The legislature and governor had approved spending $70.25 million for the fiscal year that began on July 1, 2014.
House appropriators prepare fiscal 2016 education spending bill for markup
The House appropriations subcommittee responsible for setting spending levels for the U.S Department of Education and federal education programs met to prepare its fiscal 2016 funding bill for a full committee markup next week. Lawmakers unveiled the appropriations package. Among other things, it would slash funding for the Education Department and its programs by $2.8 billion by eliminating a slate of nearly 20 programs, including many high-profile Obama administration priorities.
Transportation network predicts spread of flu virus
As part of an effort to better predict the spread of flu epidemics across the country, researchers have found that aviation and commuter networks are conducive to helping different strains of the virus spread. Researchers found that aviation networks are key to spreading the virus between countries, but that looking at smaller transportation networks, such as trains and buses, and even school bus routes, can show with larger certainty where and how the virus spreads.
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.
Opt-out state of mind: Brookings report examines movement's demographics
What's the demographic profile of students who opted out of New York state tests? One researcher at the Brookings Institution has tried to answer that question. Based on data he collected and analyzed, here's the short answer: Wealthier districts tend to have higher opt-out rates, but don't bet your life savings on that trend. Matthew Chingos, the research director of the Brown Center on Education Policy at Brookings, used opt-out data compiled by United to Counter the Core, as well as U.S. Census data on student eligibility rates for free and reduced-price meals in districts, enrollment figures and test scores from 2014.
Montana school bus drivers put skills to the test
School bus drivers from around the state tested their driving skills at the Montana ExpoPark in Great Falls, Mont. It's part of the annual Montana Association for Pupil Transportation conference. The school bus "road-eo" included nine events, each designed challenged the drivers' skills. The goal was to move the big yellow buses in and out of tight spots. It's a yearly contest that is both fun and a serious test for the drivers, with safety the number one objective.
Some schools are making parents pay for busing
It used to be that when children hopped onto a yellow school bus to get to and from their classes, taxpayers picked up the tab. But cash-strapped school districts in at least five states are now asking parents to pay for school bus service, often to offset budget deficits. "It's a trend that started back in ‘08 when the recession hit," said Dan Domenech, executive director of AASA, The School Superintendents Association. "School districts' budgets were cut back severely. As an alternative to cutting a lot of programs, districts went the route of charging fees for sports events, uniforms, after-school activities — and eventually transportation."
New school transportation policy to improve attendance in New Britain, Conn.
While the school year has come to an end for many Connecticut school districts, one city is already thinking about the start of the next school year. There will be more bus routes to get New Britain students to school on time next school year. Attendance in New Britain has been down, with some classes down to 17 percent, and with the change in more bus routes, the school board said it hopes it will bring attendance up so students can continue to learn.
Miss an issue of the NAPT Dispatch? Click here to visit the NAPT Dispatch archive page.
Transportation deal revealed: Lawmakers agreed to ax clean fuels for road fixes, documents show
Gov. Kate Brown's office and eight legislators agreed to repeal Oregon's clean fuels program as part of a deal to raise $200 million a year for transportation projects, according to details. Sources with knowledge of the closed-door talks, held in the governor's office, outlined the agreement and the sometimes heated negotiations that led to it.
Researchers: 5 ignored factors affect outcomes for poor children
The Washington Post
School leaders and policymakers trying to improve academic results for disadvantaged children need to look outside the classroom at social and economic conditions that directly affect a child's ability to learn, according to a new report. The paper, written by Leila Morsy and Richard Rothstein of the Economic Policy Institute, a left-leaning think tank, focuses on five factors that new research suggests hinder the achievement of poor children: parenting practices in low-income households, single parenthood, irregular work schedules of parents in low-wage jobs, poor access to health care and exposure to lead.
Transporting Children with Disabilities, 5th Edition,
by Dr. Linda F. Bluth, is available for purchase. NAPT members may purchase the Handbook for $19.99, plus shipping. The nonmember rate is $29.99, plus shipping.
To order your copy, please email NAPT Member Services Specialist, Brianne Peck at Brianne.Peck@napt.org today! To learn more about the new Certification in Special Needs Transportation (CSNT) click here.
Transporting Children with Disabilities, 5th Edition contains new and updated information, including useful definitions of transportation and related special education terms as well as characteristics of children with special needs and special considerations for transporting children with special needs. This popular publication also explains the legal basis for special needs transportation in accordance with the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act 2004, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 and contains information about new Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act regulations.
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