FORTVILLE, Ind. (WISH) — With early morning low temperatures and ice causing school start delays, Mt. Vernon Community School Corporation is teaming up with local start-up Mobil Trackr to provide GPS school bus tracking to parents and students waiting at the bus stop.
Derek Shelton, director of operations at Mt. Vernon Community Schools (MVCS) explained how parents can download the free app and use it anytime to locate their child’s school bus within their fleet of more than 60 buses.
“The app tracks the bus, whether it’s parked or driving, and the parent or child can pull the app up and see where their bus is,” Shelton said. “In after-school activities, when our buses have to travel significant distances, parents can still track the bus and know that the kids are on their way home.”
Parents can adjust the settings in the “Don’t Miss the Bus!” app to send them a push notification when the bus nears their child’s stop. The app also alerts parents when a bus number changes or if the schools have a delay or cancellation. Shelton, a father of two children attending Mt. Vernon schools, says he feels incorporating the app into their system shows parents the schools prioritize student safety.
“You just have the peace of mind as a parent that the kids are safe, and where they’re at, and if they’re there when they’re supposed to be there,” Shelton said.
Other school districts in central Indiana have similar programs, but Mt. Vernon’s system includes WiFi on all buses and several layers of security to ensure only those authorized to enter the app can see the bus locations. The system was developed by Mobil Trackr, an Internet of Things wireless provider based in Fishers.
“I think tech that is going to help you keep kids safe is completely needed,” said Bob Logan, vice president of sales for Mobil Trackr.
“When you can protect them when they go on the internet, and looking at them when they go places, as a parent, you feel very secure,” Logan said.
Logan says he’s a graduate of Indianapolis Public Schools and has been in the wireless industry for almost three decades. He hopes to share this technology with other school corporations around the state and help more parents and guardians make informed decisions about their children.
“That’s why Mt. Vernon is so cutting edge — because they’re wanting to deliver something to their parents to show they care enough to put these systems in place to do things for their young people,” said Logan. “We’re excited to be a part of it.”