LUBBOCK, Texas– A common concern among parents is knowing their child makes it safely to and from school every day. Frenship ISD is easing those concerns this year by providing an app to track a student’s bus route.
The app “Durham Bus Tracker” is run by Durham Bus Services, the company contracted with Frenship ISD.
Each bus has a GPS tracker, which the app is routed through, according to Michael Brooks, Frenship’s Director of Student Services.
“The protection of students is at the forefront.”Michael Brooks, Frenship ISD
More than 3,300 kids are signed up to ride a bus in the district, Brooks said. He believed this will improve communication between the district and families.
“They would be able to see exactly where their kid was and reduce some of that anxiety, especially for some of our young bus riders,” Brooks said.
Prior to the app, Brooks said they got numerous phone calls each year with questions regarding bus operations. He hoped this app decreases parent concerns.
In addition, privacy is an essential aspect of this app. Only families who have children registered to ride the bus may access the app via a confidential student code and information to be accessible.
“Additionally, you would have to know specific information about the system to be able to pull up their (a child’s) bus route and drop locations and times,” Brooks added. “Safety and security of students obviously is paramount.”
Frenship ISD is the only district in West Texas to utilize the bus app. Tommy White, the operations supervisor for Durham School Services, said only six school districts in the state use the app.
The app is free for parents and for school districts contracted with Durham, according to White. The company is working on expanding it to many more schools, he added.
“The students can use it as well and load it on a smart phone,” White said. “They don’t have to panic or sweat whether they are going to get a bus or not.”
The app only rolled out a week ago, so White said in the beginning their could be some technical difficulties. However, they will work them out as quickly as possible.
Currently, Lubbock ISD does not have the app. Erinn Greg, a spokesperson for the district, said each bus does have a GPS, so if a parent has a question about their child’s bus, give Durham School Services a call.