Q&A with Burleson Independent School District
The Burleson Independent School District, located in a southern suburb of Fort Worth, Texas, serves nearly 2,000 students in grades K-12 . GoldStar Transit, a member of the Student Transportation of America family of companies, provides school bus transportation to the district’s 17 schools across a 55 square mile area.
Transportation is a large part of our operations budget so we’re always looking for the best service at the best price. Customer service is important to us, so our school board decided to put our district transportation contract out for bid in 2015.
GoldStar Transit was awarded our contract for a number of reasons. The first is value. Although, their pricing was a bit higher than we paid under our previous contract, it was more than offset by the benefits of the new school buses they included in their bid. Safety is always our first priority and the newer buses offer the latest safety features. Additional factors that made GoldStar stand out were the company’s experience and stellar reputation with other Texas school districts, and their commitment to customer service. Also, it was clear from the outset that they treat their employees well.
The first couple weeks of school are always chaotic so we had some issues to work out during the first year of the contract. And this past fall we changed our bell times to adopt a three-tier routing system, which created another set of challenges. Through it all, Goldstar’s local team worked hard to accommodate our needs. And they were well-supported by the company’s upper management who were there on-site to help us work through all of the start-up challenges.
The entire GoldStar team is very easy to work with and always available when I have a question. We have a very comfortable, transparent relationship. We all want the best for our kids and we operate as a team to make sure they get to school safely and on time.
How is GoldStar aligned with the values that drive your school district?
GoldStar is well-aligned with the values that guide our school district. GoldStar drivers and staff are caring and empathetic, they demonstrate mutual respect, and everyone on the team is dedicated to operating efficiently to keep our students safe.
GoldStar definitely makes life easier for our Burleson staff. When questions come up in relation to routing, scheduling or behavioral issues on the school bus, GoldStar is always willing to take the phone calls and address parental issues. They support us in every aspect of student transportation. As Chief Financial Officer, I always focus on the numbers and the GoldStar team is always willing to sit down and answer any questions I have about services and charges.
What surprised you or pleased you the most about working with GoldStar?
I am very pleased with the way GoldStar communicates and works with us to solve problems. They want to do the best they can for our students and we do, too. After experiencing customer service issues in the past, working with GoldStar has been a pleasure. Our Goldstar General Manager has a very good team and morale is good.
Would you recommend GoldStar to others? What positive benefits would you emphasize?
When I recommend GoldStar to others I always focus on relationships. It’s the care GoldStar drivers take with our kids, the way GoldStar managers treat their employees and the open, transparent relationships they develop with their customers. At every level, members of the GoldStar management team are always available to take a phone call or answer a question.