A return to national in-person conferences for the student transportation industry is scheduled for Oct. 1-5. The STN EXPO Indianapolis — in its second year albeit two years and three months after its launch in June 2019 — kicks off School Transportation News events produced this fall.
The preliminary agenda is available along with the slate of speakers who have confirmed so far. Highlighting this year’s event is keynote speaker Ross Bernstein, a journalist who writes about the leadership intersection of sports and business. He kicks off the agenda on the afternoon of Oct. 1 before breakout discussions on topics such as implementing electric school buses, changing bell times, and the importance of school bus maintenance training.
Bernstein also speaks exclusively during the Transportation Director Summit on Oct. 2, an invite-only affair for the industry’s decision-makers that melds professional training with peer-to-peer networking.
STN EXPO Indy also brings back the eight-hour, hands-on Child Passenger Safety on School Buses seminar approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which has not been presented nationally since the summer of 2019. Also returning is the National School Bus Inspection Training program designed to elevate school bus inspection programs above the minimum requirement of state and federal programs. Both offerings are also scheduled for Oct. 2 and require additional registration.
Day excursions around Indianapolis are also being planned for attendees that day.
Humorist Tim Gard takes the keynote state the late morning of Oct. 3 with his talk, “Laughter Becomes You.” He will demonstrate how transportation leaders can use and instill humor in their department cultures to combat emotional and mental fatigue suffered by drivers, attendants and other student transportation staff.
Lori Desautels, Ph.D., an assistant professor at nearby Butler University, opens the afternoon with a general session that dives into how adverse childhood experiences, especially those caused by the current pandemic, suffered by students impacts the school bus ride. Breakouts that day include discussions on the bus driver shortage, the ROI of technology, and seatbelt adoption.
The trade show will be held at the Indiana Convention Center on Oct. 4, followed by more sessions that afternoon. Members of the Student Transportation Association of Indiana also meet.
The conference concludes the morning of Oct. 5 with a roundtable on lessons learned from COVID-19, with an emphasis on new practices that perhaps should have always been a part of operations.
Register online through Sept. 10.
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