A Texas school district is turning to new technology to allow parents to keep better track of their kids.
Next year when San Antonio ISD students get on their school bus, they’ll have the option to use the new Z-Pass system.
Parents will then get a text message letting them know when and where their child got on or off the bus.
The new technology is being installed on all SAISD buses, but for starters, the badges will only be available for grades five and below.
“Primarily it’s the younger students that we seem to get the most calls about and so as an added benefit to our parents in the district we thought it would be beneficial to start there,” SAISD Transportation Director Cesar Flores said.
When it comes to planning your child’s morning commute, the district will use the new Safe Stop App available for IOS and Android devices.
It will eliminate the guessing game of when the bus will show up.
Buses operate on a schedule, but weather and traffic delays are real.
“With this Safe Stop App, it’ll actually give them the ability to look in real time how far away their bus is,” Flores said.
Also new for the upcoming 2019-2020 school year, administrators will be able to view activity on school buses in real time.
It’s a feature that’ll prove helpful in the event of a disturbance or accident.
“We can actually log onto that bus and see if all the passengers inside the bus are safe or if we need to any sort of attention to them,” Flores said.
SAISD will be the first district in Bexar County to use the new features.
It’s all part of the School Bus Stop Arm Safety Program that was put in place this past school year.
Drivers spotted on camera, violating the no pass rule, are ticketed and are now paying for peace of mind for parents.
“That money that’s collected some of that money was used to purchase this and that’s why I say it’s at no cost to the district or to any taxpayers,” Flores said.
The Z-Pass badge program will be expanded to older students over time.