PDS Course Listing

All Courses with an asterisk (*) are available online.

100 Level Courses

  • 101* - Student Transportation Orientation: An eight-hour workshop providing a comprehensive introductory overview of all aspects of contemporary pupil transportation. This course provides the foundation for all of the NAPT Certificate programs.

200 Level Courses

  • 201* - Business Writing: A four-hour writing skills workshop, focused on practical tips to help you write clearly and professionally. Learn how to present yourself as a professional in writing to parents, supervisors, staff, and school boards.
  • 202* - Presentation Skills: A four-hour course on how to prepare and plan a presentation, including how to reduce anxiety, create openers and maintain interest, use visual aids, handle questions, project a polished appearance and present material in a professional manner. This course is highly recommended for all transportation personnel who present safety lessons or do training.
  • 203* - Communications Skills for Transportation Professionals: This four-hour course is about how to project self-confidence, how to recover from mistakes, and how to get ideas accepted and implemented. This is an important class for transportation personnel who want to give quality presentations, hone communication skills and enhance their careers.
  • 204* - Team Communication Strategies: This four-hour, activity-based training session will help you identify and understand your communication style, learn how to improve communication and teamwork among staff, learn how to clarify responsibilities, run productive team meetings, relay progress reports to a team and celebrate successes. This course is a must for all Transportation Managers.
  • 205* - Managing the Media: Basic principles for managing the media ranging from what is news and the importance of working with the media to media interaction guidelines. This informative course will provide the basic skills needed to successfully prepare for interacting with the media.
  • 208* - Parent, Administrator, Board and Public Outreach: This four-hour class gives tips on working with the media, school staff, community groups and parents to promote understanding of student transportation issues and needs. Learn how to identify problems and develop appropriate messaging using both time-tested and innovative mediums. This is a valuable course for transportation managers who want to strengthen community relations.

300 Level Classes

  • 301* - Basic School Transportation Accounting: This four-hour introductory seminar reviews basic bookkeeping functions, such as recording debits and credits, making correct entries and closing a set of books, and covers the elements of balance sheets, budgetary accounts, governmental funds, state and corporate transportation fund allocation systems, and Governmental Accounting Standards. This course is for entry-level administration and transportation staff that have the responsibility of tracking finances.
  • 302* - Budget Development: A four-hour introduction to school district transportation budgeting, including understanding the budget cycle, short and long-range planning and enrollment projections for budgeting purposes.
  • 303* - Procurement and Budget Management: This four-hour course explores how to do more with less and how to identify and obtain traditional and non-traditional sources of funding for school transportation. Subjects covered include purchasing practices, the bid process, and finding alternate sources of fuel savings. The course is designed for experienced administrators who need to broaden their budgetary expertise. 
  • 304 - Data Driven Decision-Making (Please note: This course is available only at the NAPT Annual Summit.): This four-hour course explores best practices when collecting, analyzing and using data to make decisions about school transportation.

400 Level Classes

  • 401* - Managing Human Resources I: This four-hour course is a must for transportation professionals with human resource responsibilities. Topics include the legal framework of human resource management, including due process, equal protection and non-discrimination, disability law, leave of absence, drug testing, record management, wage and working conditions, collective bargaining, employment eligibility and retention.
  • 402* - Managing Human Resources: Employee Relations: A four-hour practical overview of human resource management for pupil transportation managers and supervisors, focusing on employee evaluation, training, and discipline. The course also covers the "how to" of developing accurate job descriptions.
  • 403* - Labor Contract Negotiations and Management: Basic elements of labor contract negotiations including theory and negotiation styles, how to plan for bargaining, contract language and bargaining table behavior. This course concludes with basic strategies for managing the labor contract you have successfully negotiated.
  • 404* - Human Resources Critical Issues: In today's world, school transportation professionals are facing many critical personnel issues. This four-hour course covers three major critical areas: Sexual harassment, diversity and child abuse/neglect. Learn what your responsibilities are and what to do in a critical incident. 
  • 405* - Student Needs & Management: A four-hour look at student behavior issues from the management perspective. A brief review of "normal" student characteristics and behavior management strategies is followed by an in-depth look at preparing drivers and attendants for student management, working within the school district structure, developing district policy, procedures, and forms, and understanding nuances of working with students with disabilities and children from other cultures.

500 Level Classes

  • 501* - Overseeing a Fleet Maintenance Program: A four-hour workshop covering the fundamentals of fleet maintenance, designed for those interested in or with a responsibility for shop operations. This workshop is designed for all managers, not just those already familiar with fleet maintenance.
  • 502* - Advanced Shop Maintenance (Please Note: PDS course 501 - Fleet Maintenance & Management is a pre-requisite for this course.): This eight-hour workshop is a comprehensive overview, essential for every head mechanic and transportation manager interested in learning practical, cost-effective and safe practices for a school bus fleet operation. Topics include: vehicle replacement, preventative maintenance, parts acquisitions and accountability, fuel and hazardous materials management, records and documentation. 
  • 503* - School Bus Specifications: A four-hour workshop providing practical guidelines for "spec'ing," bidding, and receiving school buses best suited to your specific needs.
  • 504* - School Bus Manufacturing: Why are school buses constructed in the manner they are? What is the bus chassis construction process? How are the bus bodies made? This general overview of the bus manufacturing process will answer these questions and many more.
  • 505 - School Facility Planning (Please note: This course is available only at the NAPT Annual Summit.): A four-hour workshop designed to familiarize the transportation manager with topics to consider when evaluating an existing, or planning a new, school bus loading or unloading zone. This course will discuss different types of schools, users, parking areas, construction considerations and placement concerns. The class is highly recommended for anyone planning or embarking on a school facility construction project. 
  • 506 - Transportation Facility Planning (Please note: This course is available only at the NAPT Annual Summit.): This course will familiarize transportation managers with many areas of a school transportation facility, and provide an overview of needs to be considered for a new facility design or renovation project. This course is intended to bring forth a number of issues that should be considered by school transportation representatives when working with qualified architects and building code officials on the new design or renovation of a transportation facility.

600 Level Courses

  • 601* - School Bus Routing & Scheduling I: A four-hour workshop that examines theories and strategies for successful routing. Route types, stop choice, and multi-trip options will be discussed as well as the development of policy and procedures and their implications for economy and safety. Computer-aided and manual routing strategies will be evaluated and compared.
  • 602* - School Bus Routing and Scheduling II: This course explores the practical knowledge needed to efficiently manage your school bus routing and scheduling operations both manually and computer assisted. Areas that will be covered include: staggering of school bus routes, computer assisted routing and scheduling including GIS systems and organizational impacts.
  • 603 - Transportation System Infrastructure: This introductory course provides an overview of surface transportation infrastructure including management, engineering planning, design and safety. Basics will be provided in areas of transportation systems, design, services and facilities.
  • 604 - Transportation Program Planning and Evaluation (Please note: This course is available only at the NAPT Annual Summit.): This four-hour course provides tools and techniques for transportation safety personnel who evaluate and assess a transportation system. Lessons include a comprehensive focus on key areas such as staffing, routing and scheduling, student management and training, vehicle maintenance and customer service.
  • 605* - School Transportation Contract Management: What is the difference between a bid and request for proposal? What needs to be included in the document and how do I draft a bid or request for proposal? Obtain the answers to these questions dealing with this complex process, as well as tips on effective monitoring contractor performance.
  • 606* - Emergency Planning & Risk Management: An eight-hour workshop designed to help transportation professionals identify and manage risk. The course covers risk management policy, risk management procedures and the elements of training to avoid risk. There is a special section on emergency planning and crisis management. 
  • 607 - Legal and Regulatory Fundamentals in Pupil Transportation: Overview of federal laws and guidelines regarding school bus transportation including FMVSS, Guideline 17, commercial vehicle license, drug and alcohol testing and much more. Obtain the broad stroke on special education laws – ADA, IDEA and Section 504; 94-142. This informative course will conclude with a look at ISO 9000.
  • 608 - Developing a Safety Program: A four-hour workshop designed to help you launch or revitalize an effective and systematic safety and training program. This workshop is essential for understanding the safety fundamentals of school transportation.
  • 609 - Accident Investigation (Please note: This course is available only at the NAPT Annual Summit.): This eight hour course provides an overview of all elements of school bus accident investigation, skills needed to manage the scene, reconstruct the accident and much more.

700 Level Classes

  • 701* - Introduction to Leadership & Management: A four-hour workshop that defines the role of leadership for both experienced and novice managers. The course reviews different leadership models and explains how different models must be used with different individuals and in different circumstances. Learn strategies for developing your work force into a committed team that has the preparation to get the job done right and the creativity to find even better ways to function.
  • 702* - Personal Skills for Managers: A four-hour workshop designed to give a manager or an individual working towards a management position the personal skills necessary to be successful in a leadership position. Professional demeanor, email and phone etiquette will be discussed as well as the importance of setting a positive tone and handling negative or difficult people. Learn how to handle conflict successfully. Time management and personal work habits that will improve managers' efficiency and effectiveness will be outlined.
  • 703* - Personal Skills – Time Management: Excellent personal skills are needed to overcome the challenges of time and communication. Learn how to conduct effective meetings, avoid procrastination, delegate authority and more to meet the time crunches you face daily.
  • 704 - Strategic Planning for Transportation Departments (Please note: This course is available only at the NAPT Annual Summit.): This four-hour workshop explains the importance of strategic planning in school transportation. It reviews an 11-step process to formulate a strategic plan that includes customer feedback. This course is a must for every transportation manager who has the responsibility to plan and implement a reasonable budget each year.

800 Level Classes

  • 801* - Special Needs Student Transportation Orientation: This course uses the most recent edition of the NAPT Manual for Transporting Students with Special Needs, written by Dr. Linda Bluth, to explore the legal basis for special needs transportation. It highlights the differences between laws and policies, particularly as they affect operations and includes definitions of transportation and related special education terms, transportation requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA); Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act; the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments; and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. There is a specific focus on the characteristics of children with disabilities and the relationship of the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process to the provision of the related service transportation. Scenarios are used to discuss multiple hot topics including discipline, climate controlled school buses, door-to-door transportation, medication and oxygen transport.
  • 802 - Child Passenger Safety Restraint Systems on School Buses: This 8-hour hands on class utilizes the most current curriculum approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to teach the proper use and installation of Child Passenger Safety Restraint Systems on School Buses.
  • 803 - Specialized Transportation Skills Assessment (Please note: This course is available exclusively through NAPT.): This course is a substitute for the traditional "roadeo". Participants will perform: Pre-Trip/Check, Wheelchair Loading, Wheelchair securement, Managing Challenging Student Behaviors, Emergency Event/Evacuation, and Car Seat Securement in a hands-on collaborative setting. 
  • 804 - Product & Equipment Report (Please note: This course is available exclusively through NAPT.): Candidates will be required to provide a list of standard equipment and products regularly used in the transportation of students with special needs. This course requires an evaluation of a minimum of one product in each of the following areas: Pre-Trip/Check, Wheelchair Loading, Wheelchair securement, Managing Challenging Student Behaviors, and Car Seat Securement. 
  • 805 - Managing Behaviors of Students with Special Needs: Transportation Challenges: This course takes an in-depth look at behavior management strategies that emphasize best practices for supporting a safe school bus environment.

900 Level Classes

  • 901* - School Transportation Security Assessment: This four-hour program will teach you how to use a security assessment that has been specially created for school transportation service providers to evaluate all critical areas of your operation, including your transportation facility, buses, operational procedures, staff, and communication systems, as well as your school/community planning and cooperation.
  • 902* - Crisis Communication: Crises – however you define them – are inevitable. It is therefore important to have a crisis plan ingrained into your organization's culture. A good crisis plan creates a process that enables quick reactions and intelligent decision-making throughout the ordeal. In this four hour course you will learn about the importance of pre-planning, especially information gathering and information dissemination, and how thinking about issues in advance will help you make the best of a crisis situation.
* Course is Available Online