Conference Agenda
Session Descriptions

2009 NC Spring Tymposium, Concord, NC

The annual Tymposium was held March 17 and 18 at the Embassy Suites Hotel Resort and Conference Center in Concord, North Carolina.  During the weeks before the Conference dates, statewide budget issues had caused concern on the part of the Conference planning staff about the ability of LEA personnel to gain permission to attend.  Happily, the Conference drew one hundred seventy nine folks, only four fewer than the 2008 Tymposium.  Eighty four of one hundred twelve LEAs were represented and attendees represented the full range of personnel that are involved with pupil transportation:  TIMS Data Managers, TIMS Coordinators, Directors, Cost Clerks, an IT Technician, a Shop Foreman, Associate and Assistant Superintendents and even two LEA superintendents on the program. 

Eric Calhoun, TIMS Data Manager from Burke County and Kevin Hart, the newest addition to the TIMS support staff, managed the registration desks.

In keeping with the tenor of the times, the main thrust of the 2009 conference was increasing efficiency in transportation operations.  Most sessions addressed the issue.  Among them, directors participated in a roundtable at which they were given an opportunity to share cost-saving strategies with one another, directors and TIMS personnel attended separate presentations on ways in which TIMS can be used to trim costs, and an overview on run optimization – a primary money-saving tool and strategy – was presented twice.

The Conference proper was preceded on Monday the 16th by a two part, pre-conference session titled “Back to Basics”.  In the first part,  Derek Graham, Section Chief for DPI Transportation Services, reviewed sections of State Law that pertain to pupil transportation, demonstrating how they form the framework and justification for the pupil transportation funding formula, a constant drive for increasing efficiency, TIMS, and the Service Indicators.  In the second part, Laura Crumpler, NC Assistant Attorney General and Katie Cornetto, Staff Attorney, NC State Board of Education, discussed LEA liability, routing, and the importance of maintaining current data.

Laura Crumpler, Assistant Attorney General speaking about Liability
Dr. Barry Shepherd welcoming the conferees

Tuesday began with a plenary session during which Dr. Barry Shepherd, Superintendent of Cabarrus County Schools, welcomed the attendees.  Following, Derek and members of the TIMS support staff reported on a number of issues of interest to LEA personnel.  Topics included the current budget situation, pending legislation related to pupil transportation, and the use of Elluminate, a website that provides remote classroom capabilities.  The last is one way in which TIMS project staff are trying to accommodate local budget considerations while still meeting support needs.

of course it's not all work - it's a conference! A game of Jeopardy elicited enthusiastic participation at the banquet.
the Jeopardy winner received a 'blackberry'

The 'Blackberry' for tough times

The remainder of the conference was devoted to concurrent breakout sessions grouped into four  tracks:  Directors/Supervisors, TIMS Users, Newer TIMS Users, and Special Topics.  The set of sessions consisted of prepared presentations and of a mix of roundtables designed for input by those present.

2009 TIMS TYMPOSIUM Presentations:

click on any presentation to view or download

How Does it All Come Together? Liability Opening Session
Intro to Elluminate Live GIS Update NCWISE update
Student Upload Process System Maintenance TIMS through the Year
Communication with Superintendent Board TIMS Optimization Service Indicators
Using TIMS to Boost Productivity Staff Fun TIMS Antique Road Show
TIMS Jeopardy