JOHNSTOWN - Now that the Glove Cities' school bus transportation systems are combined and running smoothly, regional education officials hope to encourage other districts in the region to consider similar consolidation efforts.
Hamilton-Fulton-Montgomery Board of Cooperative Educational Services Superintendent Patrick Michel gave the Greater Johnstown School District Board of Education an update on the new combined transportation system Thursday night at Johnstown High School.
"I really want to compliment our bus drivers on their professionalism," Michel said.
The Leader-Herald/Michael Anich
Patrick Michel, superintendent of the Hamilton-Fulton-Montgomery Board of Cooperative Educational Services, gives the Greater Johnstown School District Board of Education an update on bus services Thursday night at Johnstown High School.
The BOCES official gave a similar update to the Gloversville Enlarged School District Board of Education on Tuesday night.
Starting this school year, the two cities' school districts combined their transportation services. Michel said BOCES is now managing the bus services as one of its "subdivisions" at the Gloversville school transportation facility on Route 29A.
During the course of this school year, he said BOCES hopes to merge the employees at the facilty into one union unit. He said a "transition" team has been meeting and a representative of the Civil Service Employees Association is slated to attend the group's next meeting. What will be discussed, he said, will be a possible new contract for the districts' bus drivers and aides.
Overall, the transition has gone well, he said, including a fairly good beginning to the school year.
"We've had some bumps in the road, no pun intended," Michel said. "And it has been going smooth ever since."
He said the hope is to have two or three other districts involved in a similar hub in the future.
"The vision is we create a series of hubs throughout the BOCES region," Michel said. "You are the pioneers. We're learning from you all, and we really appreciate that very much."
Michael Anich can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.