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Illinois high school tests program to track bus riders

Andy Williams   ||   Jan 30, 2012  ||   

Stevenson High School, Lincolnshire, Ill., is piloting a program that can track students on school buses. The goal is to increase safety while determining more efficient bus routes. The school rolled out the program in late January that provides each student with a card that the student uses as he enters or exits a school bus.

The district already issues student IDs with magnetic strips that comply with the system implemented by First Student, the district’s transportation provider. It is using its pre-installed GPS system and adding the readers at no cost to the school, said a school spokesperson.

The program will also help the district determine places where bus routes are not heavily used by students. When all the students are swiped in, a driver can see their stops and may not have to run through every stop on the route, which could potentially save the district money, said Mark Michelini, assistant superintendent for business .

The pilot program will be rolled out slowly over the spring semester, he added, with plans to eventually expand the program to five to seven buses this spring.

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