With the start of school only days away, we contacted Stock Transportation to see what changes the company has made since last year’s tumultuous start led to the termination of its contact after the 2019-2020 school year. In an email, company press official Edward Flavin provided a list of improvements. Flavin reported the following changes since March of 2019:
- Addition of New Senior Management team – Mark Hannah (COO), Pat Meagher (Director, Atlantic Canada), Darryl Amirault (Area General Manager), Garry Gosling (Project Manager) – All Transportation Management professionals (105 years combined experience).
- Contracted call center (Stock trained professionals) to eliminate unanswered calls and hold time with the goal of no unanswered phone calls.
- Informational calls to parents between August 12 – 23, confirming home addresses, student information, stop details as well as route and bus times
- New Route review process – The routing team has evaluated travel times to reduce time students spend on buses.
- IT and management staff have been conducting ongoing software (Bus Planner) testing prior to school start-up to ensure a seamless startup.
- Additional management/office staff have been added. [Operations Manager (Performance), Dispatchers and a Communications Specialist]
- Upgraded 2-way radio communication equipment
- Addition of (2) spare utility buses (1) Halifax and (1) Dartmouth (Stand-by for Breakdowns, accidents etc.)
The online app is called My Bus Planner, and can be found at https://hrce.mybusplanner.ca. When you get there, click on the yellow Parent Portal bar at the bottom of the page, and then fill in the information about your address and the students in your home.
When you put in your address, you may find that you are living close enough to the school that your children are not entitled to bus transportation. For students in Grades Primary – 6, the distance is 2.4 km or more from the school. For students in Grades 7 – 12, the distance is 3.6 km or more from the school. If you live inside these distances, you can still make a request for a “courtesy” pick up by calling HRCE’s Transportation line at 902-431-4723.