Blue Bird Corp. has delivered its first electric school bus to Michigan to serve Dearborn Public Schools, the third largest school district in Michigan, with 37 neighborhood elementary, middle and high schools educating more than 20,000 students.
Dearborn Public Schools received an advanced Blue Bird All American RE electric school bus. The school bus can carry a maximum of 84 passengers for up to 120 miles on a single charge. The vehicle takes between three and eight hours to fully recharge depending on the charging infrastructure.
“We are thrilled to add the first electric vehicle to our school bus fleet and to test the school bus in our real-world environment year-round,” says Dr. Glenn Maleyko, superintendent of Dearborn Public Schools. “Electric school buses help reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions. This marks an important step as we start to evaluate this new technology.”
“Blue Bird is recognized as a technology leader and innovator of zero-emission school buses in North America,” states Britton Smith, senior vice president of electrification and chief strategy officer of Blue Bird Corp., which has more than 850 electric-powered school buses in operation today. “We are excited to deliver our first electric bus to Michigan, a state on the cutting edge of automotive innovation and eMobility. Blue Bird continually expands its electric vehicle footprint and market reach. Today, Blue Bird electric buses transport thousands of school children every day in the majority of U.S. states.”
Dearborn Public Schools has solely relied on Blue Bird for more than 30 years to meet its student transportation needs and currently maintains a fleet of more than 70 Blue Bird buses.
Blue Bird’s electric school bus was partially funded by a $300,000 grant through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) 2021 American Rescue Plan Electric School Bus Rebate program. The EPA recently awarded extra funding to Dearborn Public Schools for up to 18 additional electric school buses through the 2022 Clean School Bus Rebate program. The EPA classifies Dearborn Public Schools as a priority district since about 70% of the families in the district are low-income.