Transportation provider change impacts more than 100 IPS transportation employees

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Indianapolis Public Schools is switching transportation providers, impacting more than 100 transportation employees.

School district representatives say they will transition all bus transportation from a shared system between the district and Durham School Services to a company called First Student Transportation effective July 1. The new company is the largest system in the country.

135 transportation employees, including bus drivers, bus attendants, and some operations staff, were notified of the change Friday. The district representative says they will work with First Student Transporation to recruit and transition all current successful employees to new roles with the company.

“Making the transition to First Student will improve the quality and reliability of transportation for our students and provide increased peace of mind for families. We value our employees and their loyal service and will work cooperatively with First Student to help all successful teammates find a new job within the company,” district representatives say.

The representative says most employees will maintain their current hourly rates, or even see increases. They are working to retain people through the end of the school year by proposing a retention bonus for all transportation employees.

The switch to First Student Transporation is expected to save the district $7 million. The company promises to purchase a new fleet of buses and introduce a parent mobile app that shows estimated arrival times and student tracking.

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