Barnegat Schools’ Transportation Coordinator Riding Off at the End of 2019

By Eric Englund | Dec 04, 2019
Supplied Photo William Cox

Barnegat — At the end of the month, William Cox will be retiring as transportation coordinator and security director for the Barnegat School District, where he has served since 2006.

Before coming to Ocean County, Cox was a member of the New York City Police Department for nearly 21 years, retiring as a detective in the Queens Homicide Squad in 2001. After moving to Barnegat in 2004, he worked in Atlantic City for both the Trump Organization as well as the Tropicana. He also worked as a school bus driver in the Southern Regional School District.

“I was hired by (then-Superintendent) Tom McMahon in 2006 to be the first security director for the Barnegat Township School District,” he said. “This was immediately following the school shooting in the Amish country area of Pennsylvania. While running security, I helped modernize and expand the closed-circuit TV system, instituted hand-held communication devices. I also instituted the first visitor pass system to the district.”

Cox said that in 2008, McMahon asked him to be the district’s transportation coordinator. Over the years, he said, the district has reduced the size of the bus fleet and staggered the workforce into groups, allowing the district to maintain its own transportation and not rely on outsourcing

“The same time, we have installed cameras and a GPS system,” he said. “We also installed all new radio systems in our fleet and, working with Ocean County, now share antenna space with the local Mosquito Commission. This has greatly enhanced bus communications.”

Cox said that every year, the state Department of Education rates the efficiency of each school transportation department that supplies transportation to students.

“There are 411 districts listed, and last year we were rated No. 3 in the entire state,” he said. “The year prior to that, we were fifth. If anything, that is what I would be most proud of, and assure that it was a collective effort of everyone involved.”

He said that four years ago, then-Superintendent Karen Wood asked if he would oversee the daily operation of the district security department in addition to transportation.

“Since that time we have seen the security department expand to having an officer in each school,” said Cox. “We have also officers who are now armed at each school. The dedicated officers of our department have raised the level of safety throughout the district.”

— Eric Englund

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