The Florida Association for Pupil Transportation (FAPT) provides vision, leadership and services to the student transportation community to improve safety, efficiency and service to Florida’s public school children.
The Florida Association for Pupil Transportation is one of the oldest state transportation organizations of its kind in the nation. Founded in 1948 “to
provide leadership, assistance, training, monitoring and other high quality services for school districts and other clients so that they may provide the safest possible transportation to the school children of Florida at the lowest reasonable cost” the FAPT has actively implemented its mission. We are a membership organization, building on each other’s strengths to make Florida the best it can be. Diversity in many forms is what it takes, challenging each other’s thoughts, not to criticize, but rather to enhance our critical thinking mindset. The FAPT believes that participation as an active member must be a win-win for you, your district and the organization in order for us all to be successful. There must be a “value added” for the parties participating and those providing the funding to participate.
A Message from the President...
On behalf of the 950,000 school children that you transport every day, I would like to say thank you. It isn’t nor has it ever been an easy task but I admire the dedication that you as professionals show every day in the way you go about your jobs. Florida districts spent over $1 billion dollars in operating costs last year in transporting those students in an economic environment that saw us being reimbursed a little over 40 cents for every dollar spent. Competition for drivers who hold CDL licensing and repair technicians has created a strain on resources available to provide this vital service to our students and their families.
With that being said, it places a lot of stress on each of us on a daily basis. Years ago there was a southern humorist, Lewis Grizzard, who wrote several books on his life growing up in rural Georgia. Lewis also suffered from many heart ailments that eventually took his life. I loved the title of his books but as he spoke of some of those health issues, he wrote a book entitled “Elvis is Dead and I don’t Feel So Good Myself”. He was faced with issues that were genetic as many of you who read this face as well. What I implore of you is not to let your jobs be a contributing factor to any stress related illness that this profession can cause. Find a balance; take care of yourself for what happens next. Remember, you are not in this industry alone. Reach out to each other and develop professional relationships within pupil transportation.
I share with my team, all 1,600 of them, that we have the power to make our department whatever we want it to be. We can either choose for it to be as a family, supportive of each other or as divisive as the politicians in DC. But at the end of the day, it is our choice, no one else’s. FAPT is a membership organization. We can be there as an organization that can support each other, help us in a world of issues that very few outside the world of transportation understand. Invest in some time developing those relationships within our organization. A safe place to bounce off ideas, to see what others are doing for many of the same issues. We are and will continue to be an organization that supports each other. There is no way I could have survived in this industry as long as I have without the professionals in this organization and their support. Please invest and make this organization work for you!
Jim Beekman – FAPT President
by the numbers
STUDENTS TRANSPORTED DAILY