©2018 | Texas Association for Pupil Transportation

Keith A. Kaup - Webmaster

October 2019

Dear Members,

As I write my first message as your TAPT President, I must tell you how honored I am to serve you and this great organization.  What a great group of friends and “transportation family” that I get to work with each day!!

It is so true what they say, even if it does seem cliché – Once you get yellow school bus transportation in your blood it is there for life!  Don’t believe me?  Just try not to wave at every school bus – even when you are out of town or even out of state; and who among us has not stopped at a railroad crossing in your car?

I say all this also to prove that it does not matter what size district you come from or how many students we transport daily…each of us brings something to the table and we each have strengths where others may not.  It also shows that you do not have to come from a large district or a large chapter to serve in any capacity with TAPT.  That is why I encourage you to get involved!  Volunteer!  Take classes and reach out for a level of professional certification.  Just showing others your love of this industry and how involved you are will enhance your career in so many ways.

While our goal is always Safety First, we know that so much else is important that can hinder that very important goal and often we get so wrapped up in the day-to-day issues that we forget why we are here.

That is why I have charged our Executive Committee with providing informational sessions at our 2020 Conference and Trade Show in McAllen that will help us to regain our focus and work through any issues that may be side-tracking our goals for excellence.

Dealing with stress, recognizing mental health issues and responding appropriately, enhancing driver morale and retention are vital tools we all need in our tool box and that we hope to bring to you as we work toward our 2019-2020 theme, “Delivering the Tools for Excellence - Healthy, Safe and Informed.”

One step in reaching this goal was to focus more on our drivers and attendants.  It is for this reason, that we will move the State School Bus Safety “Roadeo” away from conference and have created a stand -alone event just for the drivers and attendants with their very own Awards Banquet and School Bus Safety Workshop with topics and presenters geared toward their educational needs and providing them with the tools they need as they strive for excellence.  We are currently accepting applications from districts wishing to be a host for this event and will share more information as soon as the location has been determined.  Meanwhile, Save The Date: Jun 13-14, 2020.

The PDC Committee is also working hard for us…“Delivering Tools for Excellence” with several new Professional Development courses scheduled for locations around the state and for conference.

Please remember to nominate those exemplary employees that work so hard for you and the students they transport every day.  Help us recognize them at our Awards Banquet in McAllen.

Encourage districts around you to get involved.  It is so important to keep Informed in today’s ever- changing world.  Attendance at chapter meetings, attending professional development classes and taking advantage of the great trade show our vendors participate in every year where you can learn the latest trends in products and services and check out the latest equipment on the dozen or so buses on the trade show floor.

McAllen is a beautiful city and if you have not been there in a while, you will be very surprised at all the shopping, restaurants and new hotels all in walking distance of the convention center.

Please remember to be kind; to build one another up; and be grateful this holiday season for all the blessings, opportunities and amazing relationships we have with each other and also those across the nation that share the same goals we do while “Delivering the Tools for Excellence - Healthy, Safe and Informed.”

Your President,

Steve Batchelor