Thank You to the Transportation Office for Keeping Our Students Safe

By Fish Tung, Communications Office

While schools are celebrating National School Bus Safety Week in the United States, TAS also wants to seize this opportunity to highlight the dedication and hard work of our bus monitors and the Transportation Office.

Every morning, our bus monitors have to arrive at the school at 5:30 and get ready before the first departure from TAS at 5:50 AM. They are always ready to go regardless of the rainy summer days or on cold and dark winter mornings.

The TAS Transportation Office has always been service-oriented and focused on serving the needs of our community. We have approximately 965 students who currently take the school buses, 30 % of whom are one-way ticket holders while the other 70 % of students take round-trips.

There are 42 TAS bus monitors (4 of whom are substitutes) in the line of duty every day helping to organize and receive students from 35 bus runs in the morning and 48 bus runs after school. Usually, most of the bus monitors have to wake up very early to arrive in time for the morning shift.

There are three additional times of shifts at 2:50 PM, 3:45 PM, and before the late bus at 5:30 PM. The last shift, which they call the activity bus, is the thoughtful service provided for our middle school and upper school students so that they can go home safely after a long day of after-school activities.

This is a job with long working hours and can be stressful at times, but more importantly, it plays a crucial role in keeping our students safe. 

National School Bus Safety Week is an important time to reinforce bus safety and express gratitude and recognition to the bus drivers and bus staff for their committed hard work.

At TAS, our busing program is able to run smoothly and steadily because of our group of diligent and caring TAS bus monitors, the Transportation Secretary, Ms. Sandy Lee, and the Transportation Supervisor, Mr. William Wang. 

Wang said, "There are three major priorities that we value the most and keep in mind: safety, punctuality, and readiness in the case of any emergencies."

The Transportation Office is always thinking of new and meaningful ways for their team to engage in professional development so that they are up to date on their routes and well equipped to execute contingency plans in any situation. Bus monitors go through extensive pre-job training as well as regular training so that they are familiar with the bus stops, landmarks, and people on their route.

Before the outbreak of the pandemic, those fun and interesting PD days activities include trips to Yang-Ming Mountain or the campus of National Taiwan University, a city tour of downtown Taipei, or even going to a concert together.

Sandy Lee, our Transportation Secretary who has worked at TAS for 15 years, says that a big part of her job is to find out and arrange the best bus routes and pick up/ drop off points for all the students. 

"I really like to interact with people and help them in any kind of way I can," said Lee. "That's why I love my job because I have chances to help students and parents to figure out the best and safest way to come to school and get home. I also can work closely with our bus monitors and solve the problems together."

As the key group of people of keeping students safe and the ones that students interact with every day, our bus monitors are known for their professionalism and warmth. They recognize each of the students who belong to the routes they are in charge of and remember each student's name.

One of our bus monitors, Grace Hsiao, said that our students love the late activity bus time, they would play guitar and sing together sometimes, or share about their school's lives with her. 

"It's like a journey of healing, the time I spent with the students and being a company when the student needs me, it actually helped me been through the most difficult time in my life, the students bring a lot of joy for me," said Hsaio.

To these smiling adults who greet our students each morning and who are the last to say goodbye before they get home, thank you for your hard work. We are so lucky to have you in TAS.

向維護我們學生安全的交通組和隨車督導們致上感謝 

當美國當地的學校正在慶祝全國校車安全週的同時,台北美國學校也想藉這個機會特別呈現和聚焦我們交通組夥伴和隨車督導們為學校的辛勤奉獻,以及他們在工作上的用心付出。 

每天早上,我們的隨車督導們都需要在清晨五點半抵達學校,集合等待第一班5:50從TAS出發至各不同路線的巴士,能夠準時載送他們到指定站點迎接我們的學生。無論是悶熱潮濕的夏日雨季,還是冷風刺骨天還未亮的冬天早晨,他們都風雨無阻、堅守崗位。 

一直都以服務精神為目標的交通組團隊,主要專注與投入在如何能夠盡所能地滿足我們學校和社群成員們在交通接駁上的需求。目前我們學校約有965位學生搭乘校車,其中有30%是單程的為主;但有70%的學生們是仰賴校車往返學校與家中的。 

我們有42位隨車督導(其中包含4位代班的同仁)在執行每天的交通接駁任務,協助管理接待和照顧搭乘校車的學生們。我們學校目前在早晨上學期間,就有35班校車服務,下午放學時間則有48班校車執勤。通常,我們大部分的隨車督導們都必須在清晨從自家中起床出發,才能夠準時到校或至各站點準備,迎接早上的隨車勤務。 

因應不同的放學時間,下午分別有三個班次:2:50、3:45,以及額外一班5:30的校車。這個晚班校車,他們稱為課外活動巴士,是交通組為我們中學部和高中部學生們提供的貼心服務,讓他們在一整天的學習以及參與課外活動後,能夠安全地回到家中。 

交通組和隨車督導的工作,工時很長,也會有一定的壓力。但最重要的是,這份工作在維護我們學生的安全上扮演了關鍵性的角色。 

全國校車安全週是強化校車安全觀念,以及對校車司機、隨車督導們在工作上的辛勞與付出致上肯定與感謝的重要時刻。 

在台北美國學校,我們的校車營運方案能夠順利、穩定地進行,是因為我們有一群勤奮、溫暖、細心的隨車督導、交通組秘書李珮瑤女士,還有交通組的主任王愛華先生。 

王主任提到:「有三件最重要的事情是我們最重視並時刻謹記在心的:安全、準時,以及對突發狀況能夠緊急應變的能力。」 

交通組時常會想出許多有趣創新又同時具有意義的方式,來為整個團隊進行專業發展。這樣他們就可以對校車的路線更為了解,也會知道要如何在任何可能的情況下作好應變的準備。透過這些職前和在職的培訓,我們的隨車督導們就會對沿路的站點、地標,和屬於該線路的學生們更加熟悉。 

在疫情爆發前,交通組的專業發展培訓常會安排很多好玩有趣的活動,像是去陽明山走走、走讀台大校園、台北城市一日遊,又或是一起去聽個音樂會等等。 

我們交通組的秘書李珮瑤已經在台北美國學校工作了15年,她說她的工作主要是協助我們的學生跟家長,與他們溝通,並安排最適合的行車路線和校車接送點。 

李女士接著說:「我很喜歡跟人互動,還有盡我所能地幫助他們。」「所以我很喜歡在這邊工作的原因,就是能夠有機會協助我們的學生跟家長們,找到最合適也最安全往返學校和家裡的方式。我也可以有機會跟我們所有的隨車督導們一起工作,幫助他們解決遇到的問題。」 

身為維護學生安全以及每天都會和學生們互動的關鍵群體,相信很多人都能夠感受到,我們的隨車督導們是非常專業而且熱情溫暖的。他們可以認出他們負責路線的學生們,甚至記得那些學生們的名字。 

我們其中一位隨車督導蕭采真女士說道,我們的學生們很喜歡也很享受搭乘晚班課外活動巴士的時間,有時候他們會拿著吉他或其他樂器練習或唱歌,她則會一邊欣賞這些學生們的才華一邊為他們拍手。學生們也會跟她分享他們在學校的生活點滴。 

蕭女士說:「做隨車督導的工作就像一個療癒的旅程,陪伴學生們成長,還有跟他們相處的時間,其實幫助我度過了我人生當時很大的低潮與傷痛,我們的學生們帶給我很多的喜樂和開心的回憶。」 

致這些在每日清晨精神奕奕、溫暖問候我們的學生,還有伴著夜幕護送學生安全返家、微笑道別的交通組團隊和隨車督導們,謝謝你們的付出與努力!我們何其幸運,在學校這個大家庭裡,有你們身在當中。