Saturday 16 December 2017

Getting kids to school is up to parents, not the State

If we want to choose where our children are educated, then we must pay for the transport, writes Carol Hunt

The announcement of proposed changes to the School Transport Scheme (STS) has, unsurprisingly, been followed by a wave of parental indignation. School transport that had previously been provided 'free' (cost to the State, €1m per day) will now be charged at €50 per primary-school child (up to a maximum of €110 per family) and the cost for secondary-school children will peak at €650 per family, per year. Of even more concern to parents is the fact that up to 150 routes which service less than 10 children will be abolished and the distance criteria of two miles will be applied nationally.

Stories such as that of Kate Brosnan (Irish Independent, June 27), a mother of two who says she must either fork out up to €400 for her children's travel or leave her job, have been circulating all week.

On top of all the other 'stealth' charges and taxes with which we've been hit, one would have to have a heart of Thatcherite steel not to be sympathetic to some parents who will now have to make their own arrangements to deliver their children to school.

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