For the second time in three months, Alvarado ISD’s School Board took aim at rejuvenating an aging fleet of vehicles by purchasing a second school bus this year, along with two other vehicles – an Expedition and an F250 truck - for district use.
“While many districts are hurting financially, Alvarado ISD has always spent conservatively, thus providing the ability to make purchases like these as the need arises,” said Dr. Chester Juroska, Alvarado ISD Superintendent.
The district currently has two vehicles – an Excursion and Expedition – that are used for everything from staff traveling to trainings, hauling the band trailer, to small student groups. Last year the vehicles were used 213 times and on 57 occasions both vehicles were checked out at the same time.
Having the district vehicles saves the district money from reimbursing employees for gas and saves the cost of gas and a driver for small groups of students that may not require a bus.
“When employees who use their own vehicles for school related business are reimbursed according to the state rate it gets quite expensive for the school,” Juroska said. “These new school vehicles will save on wear and tear on teachers’ personal cars and in the long run, save the school money.”
The new truck will be primarily utilized by the band and agriculture classes. The band trailer when loaded weighs approximately 15,000 pounds and is currently hauled by the Expedition, but there is concern about that big of a load on the vehicle.
By purchasing a new truck the band will be able to have a truck to pull the trailer and it will open up the Expedition for another use on Friday nights or on days when the band has a competition.
The agriculture department will also take advantage of the new truck. Several times throughout the year there are ag students going to different locations across the state and teachers are asked to pull the trailers with their own vehicles.
“Our Ag teachers are very dedicated and do whatever it takes to help the students without complaining, but it is a bit much to expect them to use their own vehicles for this purpose,” Juroska said. “It is only fair that we provide them with the resources for them to serve the students.”