Bus tracking options for JCPS parents

Some JCPS parents took tracking their children’s buses into their own hands Friday.
Published: Aug. 18, 2023 at 7:12 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Some JCPS parents took tracking their children’s buses into their own hands Friday.

As elementary and middle schoolers return to school JCPS said they aren’t ready to roll out their bus tracking app to parents just yet. A cybersecurity instructor from the University of Louisville gave advice to parents on which tracking devices they should use.

”Please be very careful on what you install and download,” UofL Associate Professor in Computer Science and Engineering Dr. Adrian Lauf said. “Make sure it is reputable because you are literally giving information about your child’s whereabouts out, you don’t know how secure that application is- so do your due diligence, ask questions.”

Whitney Lyons said she downloaded the Find My Kids app to keep in touch with her third-grader and a kindergartener at Fern Creek Elementary. The app shows a map of your child’s movement and their location. On the first day of school, Lyons said her kids’ bus was almost two hours late.

”I couldn’t get through to the compound,” Lyons said. “I even tried the RIDE number that they had put out, and I was on hold for over 10 minutes.”

WAVE asked you on Facebook what ways are you tracking your children. Common answers included other popular apps like Life 360 or tracking devices such as air tags.

”The problem with the tags are that there needs to be a cell phone nearby to be seen, but so many people have smartphones that these typically tend to work pretty well,” Lauf said. “Downside is that the update rate on them is pretty slow, and you might be 10 to 15 minutes behind depending on when a nearby phone saw it or not.”

If you are a parent still waiting past 45 minutes for your child’s bus to arrive, you are encouraged to contact your school first, then the 485-RIDE bus hotline. The district said the call center will stay open until the last student is dropped off.