Wayland Boosters purchases new athletic bus

Pictured+above+is+the+new+WHS+athletic+bus.+Wayland+Boosters+recently+purchased+the+bus+to+transport+athletes.+%E2%80%9CBecause+it+is+cheaper%2C+it+allows+us+to+travel+and+maybe+do+some+more+scrimmages+and+do+some+events+that+we+don%E2%80%99t+normally+do.+It+gives+us+some+more+flexibility+to+schedule+things+on+different+days%2C%E2%80%9D+Athletic+Director+Heath+Rollins+said.
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Wayland Boosters purchases new athletic bus

Pictured above is the new WHS athletic bus. Wayland Boosters recently purchased the bus to transport athletes. “Because it is cheaper, it allows us to travel and maybe do some more scrimmages and do some events that we don’t normally do. It gives us some more flexibility to schedule things on different days,” Athletic Director Heath Rollins said.

Pictured above is the new WHS athletic bus. Wayland Boosters recently purchased the bus to transport athletes. “Because it is cheaper, it allows us to travel and maybe do some more scrimmages and do some events that we don’t normally do. It gives us some more flexibility to schedule things on different days,” Athletic Director Heath Rollins said.

Credit: Isabel Gitten

Pictured above is the new WHS athletic bus. Wayland Boosters recently purchased the bus to transport athletes. “Because it is cheaper, it allows us to travel and maybe do some more scrimmages and do some events that we don’t normally do. It gives us some more flexibility to schedule things on different days,” Athletic Director Heath Rollins said.

Credit: Isabel Gitten

Credit: Isabel Gitten

Pictured above is the new WHS athletic bus. Wayland Boosters recently purchased the bus to transport athletes. “Because it is cheaper, it allows us to travel and maybe do some more scrimmages and do some events that we don’t normally do. It gives us some more flexibility to schedule things on different days,” Athletic Director Heath Rollins said.

Isabel Gitten and Abby Stoller

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The Wayland Boosters Association recently purchased a small school bus for the Wayland Athletic Department. It will be used to transport athletes and students at WHS. The bus is ready to operate and carry fourteen students with the coach as the driver.

The Wayland Boosters Association is a Wayland organization that is designed to support athletic teams and the athletic department in both Wayland High School and Wayland Middle School. They are responsible for granting proposals from the athletic department. Also, they focus on the financial side of our sports teams.

The idea of purchasing a smaller bus for the athletic department was first brought up two years ago by Boosters and the former athletic director, Stephen Cass.

“We were talking to the former athletic director in what ways we could support and find long term budget help for the athletic department,” Wayland Boosters President Maureen Tillett said. “We all came up with the idea of buying an MFSAB bus.”

MFSAB stands for Multifunctional School Activity Bus. This type of bus is smaller than the common large yellow school bus and it is made to fit fifteen people including the driver.

Current Athletic Director Heath Rollins helped push for the bus this school year.

The bus was entirely paid for by Booster fundraising. Boosters’ annual Fun Drive, donation letters and telethon were the major donating forces that led to the purchase of the bus.

Boosters was motivated to get this smaller bus because of financial difference it will make for the athletic department budget. The bus will help the athletic department save a lot of money each year.

“Thirty percent of the athletic budget goes toward transportation,” Tillett said. “[This money goes toward] the rental of the bus and the fee for the bus driver. Anytime we can get away from getting that fee charged to the department, it means we are saving a couple hundred to a thousand dollars.”

The athletic department is only responsible for paying for the gas, insurance and maintenance on the bus.

“Because it is cheaper, it allows us to travel and maybe do some more scrimmages and some events that we don’t normally do. It gives us some more flexibility to schedule things on different days,” Rollins said.

Tillett explained that this bus will make a large positive impact on the athletic budget. Another advantage about the new bus is the flexibility it allows.

“They can drive the bus to the game, park the bus, leave the bus there, and then it is there when they are done. That doesn’t always happen with our current bus service,” Rollins said. “When we schedule a bus and one drops off and then another one picks up there can be timing issues. It is much more consistent.”

This consistency means that student athletes will spend less time waiting for transportation.

“It will get our student athletes home quicker, and I think that is important to us all.” Rollins said.

The flexibility that the bus allows also can be applied to who uses it. The primary purpose of the bus is for athletes to use it, but it can also be used around the community. The athletic department can loan the bus to different departments for uses around the school system.

Recently, the Wayland Middle School sixth graders used the bus to help transport students during the Walden Pond bike trip.

The bus sits 11 to 14 people. Smaller teams will be using the bus the most, but it can also be used as a shuttle bus for games throughout Wayland.

“Right away the golf team is using the bus, they are an easy fit in the fall because they are only taking around 11 to the matches, Rollins said. “They are going to be the first team to use the bus.”

This winter, other teams will be using the bus, such as the basketball team.

“The basketball team could fit on it. The freshman team goes into the bus, and then the JV team will go in the second bus, and when the freshman team comes back, the varsity team can hop on,” Rollins explained.

The major difference between the big commercial busses that have previously been used and this new small bus is that coaches have the opportunity to drive it.

“A normal sized bus requires a special commercial driving license. Most of our coaches are not interested in getting trained (in a commercial license) because it takes a lot of time and a lot of money and energy to maintain that license. This smaller sized vehicle is available to drive on a regular driver’s license.” Rollins explained.

Any coach who drives the bus must have their license and driving records checked. There is no official training that a coach must go through to drive the bus.

“If a coach is comfortable and qualified to drive [the bus], and the team fits on it, they can use it,” Rollins said.

Tillett notes that the bus would not have been possible without help from a strong athletic director like Rollins and Boosters treasurer Mark Lucier

Tillett and Rollins are excited to say that a second MFSAB will be coming to WHS soon. This second bus was made possibly by a significant thirty thousand dollar donation by Village Bank.

The new bus will be arriving early this winter.

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