Category Archives: Transportation

Transportation Services to review afternoon routes

Transportation Services is conducting a comprehensive review of all afternoon bus routes to ensure all stops are scheduled appropriately and all routes can be completed safely in the time allotted.

This analysis comes on the heels of a similar review of all morning bus routes, which is wrapping up. Department staff are expected to complete the review and make any necessary route changes by February 2019.

“I want parents to know we hear them,” Interim General Manager John Wilcots IV said, noting that they focused first on morning routes to ensure students were getting to school on time. “They want us to get these afternoon routes reviewed and updated, and that’s what we’re going to do.”

As part of the review, stop times will be updated to accurately reflect the time needed to execute each route. This will help the department provide parents with accurate pick-up and drop-off times. Continue reading

Transportation Services experiencing reduced late school bus arrivals

The number of buses arriving late to school each morning has been cut dramatically over the past three months as Transportation Services continues to review and refine its operations and provide the best possible service to students.

Currently, the department averages about 30 to 40 late buses every day, which equates to as many as 5 percent of the district’s 878 routes. That’s a significant decrease from the average in August, when almost 20 percent of buses — roughly 140 to 160 each day — were late. The numbers are tracked manually.

“The percentage of late arrivals has been drastically reduced since the start of school,” Interim General Manager John Wilcots IV said Tuesday as he presented a department update to the HISD Board of Education. “I believe that our new technology is going to help us continue to make tremendous improvements. We are learning, and we have a lot of lessons learned.” Continue reading

Transportation’s Coffee & Conversations aims to foster communication with parents   

HISD parents and campus administers gathered with Transportation Services staff on Wednesday to discuss their most pressing transportation concerns during the second round of Coffee & Conversations.

The bimonthly meetings — held this month at Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center and Carnegie Vanguard High School — allow Transportation Services the opportunity to share important updates and progress, identify ongoing challenges and gather feedback.

“We know we have a lot of work to do,” Wilcots said. “But know that we are making changes and working every day to better our systems.”  Continue reading

HISD Transportation Services continues to update routes, reinstate bus stops

Almost 80 bus routes impacting more than 3,750 students across the district have been updated this week and six major bus stops in west, south, and southwest Houston are being reinstated.

The changes are part of Transportation Services continued efforts to review and streamline operations, improve services, increase efficiency, and ensure all students arrive at school each day safely and on time.

“The changes we’re making might seem incremental, but they’re all important,” HISD Transportation Services Interim General Manager John Wilcots IV said. “Each update we make increases our operational efficiency, but more importantly, it helps us provide better service to our students.”

Continue reading

HISD Transportation reinstating four bus stops in southwest Houston

HISD’s Transportation Services has reinstated four major southwest Houston school bus stops serving roughly 600 students and is recruiting more than 90 safety monitors to oversee magnet hubs across the district.

The changes are part of a continued effort by the department to improve its services and ensure students arrive at school safely and on time each day.

“Our goal is to ensure all students arrive at school by 7:15 a.m. and 8:15 a.m. — 15 minutes ahead of the standardized start times,” Transportation Services Interim General Manager John Wilcots IV said. “Our employees see the value in meeting this goal.”

The reinstated stops are located at the intersections of Allday and Sands Point drives, Memorial and Plainwood drives, and Player Street and Tidewater Drive, as well as one stop along Tiger Lilly Way. Students assigned to these stops have already been notified. Continue reading

HISD bus riders to begin scanning bus badges on Monday

HISD bus riders at 22 pilot schools across the district began scanning their badges as they got on and off the bus this week as part of the official launch of Student Badge Program.

The 22 pilot schools were tapped to lead the initiative, giving Transportation Services time to review the initial rollout and refine the program as needed before implementing it districtwide next week.

Bus riders at all remaining HISD schools will begin scanning their badges during the week of Oct. 29.

“No one will be refused transportation if they don’t have a badge. However, it’s important for students to remember to bring and scan their badges every day,” Transportation Services Interim General Manager John Wilcots IV said. “These badges give us — and their parents — access to real-time information about when and where students get off the bus. But no badge equals no data.” Continue reading

Transportation Services begins bus badge distribution

HISD Transportation Services began distributing personalized badges this week to HISD student bus riders as part of the district’s Student Badge Program.

Badge distribution began Thursday, Oct. 18 and Friday, Oct. 19 for a 22-school pilot group with general distribution across the district set to begin on Monday, Oct. 22.

The 22-school pilot group includes: Elmore, Herod, Lockhart, Parker, and River Oaks elementary schools; Woodson PK-5; Fondren, Pershing and West Briar middle schools; Carnegie Vanguard, Chavez, Lamar, Waltrip, Westbury, and Westside high schools; DeBakey High School for Health Professions, Mandarin Immersion Magnet School; Houston Academy for International Studies, Gregory-Lincoln Educational Center, Baylor College of Medicine Academy at Ryan; Mickey Leland College Preparatory Academy for Young Men; and High School for Law and Justice. Continue reading

Transportation launching new tool for parents to track their child on HISD school buses

Transportation Services is introducing a new student badge program that will allow parents to track when and where their students board and depart HISD school buses.

Beginning, Oct. 29, students who are eligible for bus transportation service will use a personalized badge that must be scanned when they enter and exit their school bus.

“As we rectify some of the bus issues we have encountered this school year, this badge program will help to ease parents’ tensions,” said John Wilcots IV, interim general manager of Transportation Services. “They will know exactly when their child boards and exits the bus to go to school in the morning and the same at the end of the school day when they go home.” Continue reading

HISD Transportation Services holding job fair to recruit bus drivers

The Houston Independent School District’s Transportation Services department will host a job fair this month to recruit bus drivers as part of continuing efforts to make sure all routes are fully staffed and drivers are available for both new routes and to provide coverage if employees are absent.

The job fair will be held from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Sept. 22 at Sterling High School.

Selected applicants will earn a starting hourly wage of $16.65 and will be provided free CDL training. Other benefits include health, dental, and vision insurance, Teacher Retirement System participation and special trip pay options. Continue reading

Transportation Services taps new leader with strong logistics background to oversee daily operations

A new senior leader has been named to the Houston Independent School District’s Transportation Services department as part of continued efforts to address challenges and improve bus service for students.

German Enamorado will help oversee operations as the department’s new senior operations manager. He will report directly to Transportation Services General Manager Tim Brown. His post is effective immediately.

“My first goal is to review current processes and see what key areas need immediate attention, so we can improve student arrival time,” said Enamorado, whose background is in logistics. “I’m looking forward to hearing from stakeholders to see how our new procedure is impacting kids and determine what we can do to improve it.” Continue reading