Why Should Your School Management System Include a Transport Management Module

A parent’s highest priority is to ensure their children are safe. While some parents can safely drop off their kids at school, some have to send them alone. As they are not there to physically ensure their child gets off and enters the school gates safely, the mode of transportation used to get to school is of central concern.  They may therefore be reluctant to let their kids go on public transport, walk to school or take a private van. One way to solve this is by allowing the school to take on this responsibility. Hence, schools have long introduced a transportation management system to pick up their students and bring them safely to school. Thus, parents can ease their minds and ensure that their child is in safe hands.  It is here that an advanced School Transportation Management module comes to be of use. It is currently a highly used school management software tool that helps educational institutes manage their operations and is popularly opted by parents.

What Is a Transportation Management System?

While some schools adopt a completely separate transport management system software, others incorporate it as a module into their standard school management system. Hence, rather than having to monitor a separate database, the school administration can simply have records of everything they need related to transport in one integrated platform for all administration or financial purposes. 

The transportation module embodies an integrated end-to-end management system. It records the details of each driver allocated to each bus daily. It also has the vehicle number, the number of children that opted to take school transport, payments made and much more. The system also lets the administration notify parents of any changes, including annual revised bus fees. The administration can moreover easily track the fleet of buses belonging to the school and note down essential metrics.

What Does It Do?

The number of features a school wants to be included in the transportation management module is up to them. Various vendors offer different features, and these can be customisable. Here is a list of popular features that should be incorporated into your transport management system: 

Assigning New Routes and Stops

Sometimes leaving early does not guarantee the student will not get late. Outside factors such as the amount of traffic, weather and others play a role. All school bus fleets can have a set route that helps them to reach the school as early as possible. A bus would generally have certain stop spots for students to get in. Hence, whenever a new student opts for the school bus, the administration can assess which route is less energy-consuming and prone to less traffic by considering alternative routes and communicating it to the driver. This gives the administration the upper hand and more control in ensuring that all students reach school on time. 

Responsibility to Ensure Only Well-Equipped Vehicles Are Deployed

A child’s safety is not limited to getting to school in one piece. Instead, the standard of the bus is significantly essential as well. Ensuring all seats in the bus are functional and that there are no broken windows which a child could injure themselves with is critical. Since the school offers transport as a value-added service, and a fee is charged, a child should not have to stand or sit on the floor. Avoiding breakdowns to guarantee students do not get late or will be stranded on the road are other ways the school is required to assure the safety of their students. This means the administration must carry out necessary maintenance by putting all buses for service. Also, ensuring that the buses are well equipped with fuel and oil are other ways to ensure that the vehicle runs well.

Setting Ground Rules

As school is a place of specific rules and regulations, it is no surprise that this principle extends to transportation. Students should, for instance, be on time and stay at the pickup spot when the bus arrives. If a child misses a bus, parents cannot blame the school. Kids will also have to respect property on the bus and note not to break or damage seats or windows, and keep the inside of the bus clean. All these rules should be published in a specific space accessible by students and parents to ensure compliance. Implementing a feedback tool also allows parents or students to complain if the driver is speeding over the limit.

Track Bus Fleets Real-Time

Tracking each bus is the best way to confirm a child’s safety. Hence, the administration should monitor all buses registered at the school. If required, the school can provide an option for parents to track the route taken whilst the administration can watch the path the driver is taking at all times. This offers transparency to parents, whereas the administration can monitor the driver. For example, if the school finds that expenses for fuel have been incurred unnecessarily, checking the tracking records will be a sure way to confirm. If additionally, the bus suddenly breaks down, real-time tracking allows the school to send another bus promptly.

Send Alerts to Parents

The school should send all alerts regarding transport to parents. This includes any emergency alerts that assure the students are safe or alerts regarding schedule changes. Alerts that notify parents of changes in the route taken or time taken to pick a group of students from a certain spot must also be made. A change in the bus that is generally used to pick up students should also be alerted. For instance, the number plate of the replaced bus with the driver could possibly be sent. Where the bus is unavailable, the school should notify parents of its unavailability in advance so they can make preparations in case school cannot be missed on that day. The easiest way to send alerts would be to provide a mobile app whereby parents can simply log in to find all the information they require.

Easy Payroll Processing and Transport Fee Collection

It is a tedious and sensitive matter to handle finances in general. Trying to record school and transportation fees then separately would be a hassle. An expert transportation module incorporated into a school management system uncomplicates things for the school administration. An email or text message can be sent whenever fees are due, along with the required amount. Good software vendors would provide the option to make payments online via a safe payment gateway. An automatic receipt can be generated for the parent’s records, whereas the finance team can easily view the history of all transactions made to the school. Upon payment, the module will instantly update the student’s records. Drivers can moreover receive their pay on time with a transport management system. The system will immediately remind the management to make the relevant fees. According to the number of days the driver provided his services, the finance team can accurately pay the due amount without any mistakes. The transportation module, therefore, streamlines the payroll and transport fee collection process.

Become a Well-Rounded Educational Institute That Prioritises a Child Education and Safety

An educational institute’s role in today’s society is not limited to academics. It is a central pillar of a child’s growth and development that moulds them into responsible citizens. Some students live far from their schools, requiring their parents to be concerned about their safe travel methods.  There are a large number of students that are not able to have access to quality education due to the lack of transport. They either end up getting homeschooled, or they may have to go into a school close to home that may not offer standardised education or sufficient growth development opportunities. Having a transportation module reflects positively on the school administration. It demonstrates the dedication schools have undertaken to ensure quality education is accessible by providing the option to monitor a child’s journey from home to the institute’s gates. Be a leading example that upholds education and the safety of students to the highest degree by incorporating a transportation module into your school management system.