Of course just about the most important point about leasing a school minibus is to ensure that the monthly payments are met, that the bus is serviced and repaired as need be, and that parents and other interested parties know all about how it is being used.
Now it is worth stressing “leasing” here because by and large schools that buy their own minibus do so with donations from parents so everyone will be aware that the school has got a minibus.
But leasing – a much more balanced and efficient funding system – does have one draw back. It doesn’t require this fundraising work, and so the awareness that the bus has been acquired by the school is often missing.
Yes, telling everyone in the school that the school has a minibus (or indeed a second minibus) is vital if pride in the school is to be increased and awareness of what the school is doing is to be enhanced.
This can be done in several ways.
First through putting a note at the end of the weekly email to parents about school life, giving a list of all the places and events that the bus has been used to take pupils and students to.
Second there can be an accumulated half termly list put on the school web site.
And finally – perhaps most interestingly but also most often missed – there can be a school blog which records each outing and event from the point of view of those who went.
The blog is something that should be written by one or more pupils or students who travelled on the bus for a particular event – with the duty of writing the blog circulating among those on the trip. Not only does this build up into a complete record, from the students’ point of view, of the use of the bus, it is also an excellent exercise in reportage writing.
Indeed students can be encouraged to make their report more interesting than the one before, whilst staying within the bounds of reality and good taste!
The point about blogs is that their readership can become very large and as long as the pieces are positive then they will become an ever more important way of spreading the word about what the school is doing.
Thus it is important that the blog should have a link at the end of each article back to the school’s website, and to ways of getting in touch with the school.