Monday, January 15, 2007

Sprint Keeps Track of Kids by Monitoring School Buses

Global Positioning System service offered by Sprint will allow school districts to track the locations of their school bus fleets. The service will also show administrators which pupils are aboard the buses and the stops where they get off.

The iX-3 system, designed by Sprint partner Everyday Wireless, uses the carrier’s iDEN network and GPS signals to track a bus’ location. It can also track rider attendance, and can send automatic alerts if a student gets off at the wrong stop. Finally, the service can also generate automated rider reports for school districts that are required to file such reports in order to receive state and federal funding.

The technology “does not delay the boarding and disembarking process,” according to the companies. Other features include integration with Sprint Nextel’s iDEN push-to-talk service, direct dispatch, two-way text messaging and live audio monitoring and recording.

According to Bill Bair, director of transportation for the Colorado Springs School District, the Everyday Wireless system “has significantly reduced the number of complaints that we received from schools and parents.” He said the technology has “eliminated the need to make return phone calls to parents since now we have the ability to address their issues immediately be looking at up-to-date data.”


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