Ky. school district rolls out 'smart bus'


Associated Press

Posted on May 10, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Updated Friday, May 10 at 3:02 PM

RICHMOND, Ky. (AP) — A central Kentucky school district says it has rolled out the first "smart bus" in the state.

The Richmond Register ( reports the retrofitted school bus is the first to offer students a filtered Internet connection.

Madison County Schools Superintendent Tommy Floyd says the bus is about "getting information to kids beyond the school day."

"This opens up so many doors," he said, noting that it will allow students access to information on their way to school, home, sporting events or field trips.

"We can park the bus and students can use their mobile devices. We can bring out some iPads, and kids can have internet access whether you're in Poosey Ridge or Union City; from downtown Richmond to downtown Berea."

Technology director Bob Moore said the unit used to access Internet in the bus can be removed and hooked up to other power sources.

He says there's a one-time cost of $300 for hardware that turns the bus into a mobile hotspot and the district will pay a monthly $60 fee, but $42 is reimbursed through Universal Service Fund.

Assistant transportation director Pat Hoskins says it will also help keep students occupied during trips.

"Other schools will want to do this," Floyd predicted.


Information from: Richmond Register,