Transportation Supervisor of the Year
Kalamazoo Public Schools' Terri Aman Honored for Work and Innovation
Kalamazoo Public Schools Executive Supervisor for Transportation Terri Aman was named Transportation Supervisor of the Year in Michigan at the Michigan Association for Pupil Transportation conference held June 22 in Bellaire.
The award honors nominees for management skills, involvement in school programs and the ability to set and achieve goals.
Aman said the award was a tribute to her entire department.
“Transportation is not just one person. We have a whole big group that works hard together,” she said. “Our whole transportation department works hard and does a great job transporting our kids to school every day.”
In nominating Aman for the award, KPS Superintendent Dr. Michael F. Rice said she is in charge of one of the largest school bus fleets — 120 — in the state. The transportation department transports more than 7,000 students daily. The district’s approximately 120 bus drivers log more than 1.4 million miles per year for families.
“This is an extremely complex and often challenging department,” Rice said. “However, Terri always handles the complexities and stressful situation professionally, and often with a measure of humor as well. She is dedicated to meeting the needs of all of our students. It is vitally important to her that our students have a safe and comfortable bus ride, and that the buses arrive to their bus stops and schools on time.”
Aman began working with the district as a co-op student in 1977. In 2003, after the death of the transportation director and an unexpected medical leave by the transportation coordinator, Deputy Superintendent Gary Start asked Aman to step in as interim transportation coordinator. She did such a good job, Start appointed her to the position permanently the next year.
She oversees an annual $7.7 million budget, has instituted annual safety awards, and manages a bus maintenance program that has seen 99 percent of the district’s buses passing the state police annual inspection over the past three years. Her work in the district includes coordinating risk management and purchasing. In 2014, Communities in Schools of Kalamazoo honored Aman as one of its "Champs," for her work helping students.
But above all, Start said, Aman has excellent people skills. She uses those personal skills not only to address concerns from the public but to create a positive environment in her department.
“I have found that keeping bus driver morale high is very difficult,” he said. “However, our transportation personnel know that Terri cares deeply about each one of them. As a result, morale is much higher than would otherwise be the case.”
Photo courtesy of Communities in Schools of Kalamazoo