It takes a lot more than school buses to meet the transportation needs of a school district the size of the Arlington ISD. Service vehicles – also known as the white fleet – help the district support its many and varied infrastructure and operational needs. And as the district grows, so does the need for good service vehicles.
The 2014 Bond program is ensuring the district’s transportation department has the white fleet vehicles it needs. Over the course of five years, the AISD is purchasing 150 new white fleet vehicles with bond funds. To date, 74 have been ordered and received.
White fleet vehicles assist district staff in keeping AISD schools functional and safe.
“They keep all the schools running,” said Tim Collins, AISD director of transportation.
“It is easy to devalue the importance of this part of the ‘backbone,’ which is the white fleet,” said Guy Jones, AISD transportation fleet manager. “They work in the shadows many times and yet support our schools and facilities and contribute in providing a quality education to our students.”
The vehicles are used for numerous infrastructure and maintenance needs, including HVAC, grounds, electrical, plumbing, IT, warehouse, food services, security and more. Others are used for transporting small groups of students for various activities.
Many of the departments that use the vehicles run on the weekends and throughout all 12 months of the year. Security, for example, has three shifts each day. Their vehicles are always going. Dependability and availability are essential. Therefore good maintenance and a regular replacement cycle for the vehicles are critical.
The bond program is making that possible.
“We must always show that we are being exceptional stewards of the funding we receive and putting it where it matters most,” Jones said. “If we are to retain the confidence of all concerned then we must deliver the results that are expected. As the transportation fleet manager, I work to meet our department’s mission to maintain that confidence going forward every year and deliver a quality product and service.”