2019 Wagner Finalist: Empowering Denver Public Schools System to Optimize School Bus Operations

Amanda Chu, Pinar Keskinocak, Georgia Tech-ISYE, Atlanta, GA
Monica Villarreal, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO

Over 25 million students take advantage of school bus services according to the U.S. National Center for Education Statistics. School bus transportation is an integral service to students and their families. This collaborative project between Denver Public Schools (DPS) and Georgia Tech focused on creating bus route assignments to minimize objectives such as buses used, lateness, and reposition miles.

We incorporated models into a decision-support (DS) tool, which enables users to create and analyze school bus route assignments. The methods and tool have been successfully used by DPS routers and analysts in the 2018-2019 academic year resulting in positive impact across multiple dimensions.